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Lake Area Tech Sets Another Student Enrollment Record for Fall 2022

Posted on: September 12, 2022   |   Category: News
Lat Student Center

For Immediate Release
September 12, 2022

WATERTOWN, SD – At a time when community college enrollment continues to decline across the nation, Lake Area Technical College has set yet another student enrollment record by achieving a 2.2% increase in overall student numbers. With a strong returning student count and robust freshman class, the total for the 2022 fall semester is 2,238 compared to 2,190 in 2021.  Significantly, 20.3% of the degree-seeking students self-reported as first-generation college attendees in their family, nearly 17% of the students are taking online programs, and almost 10% of the students are receiving full-ride Build Dakota Scholarships.

The increase of students in programs is evident across campus; however, the most significant growth comes from high-demand programs such as Diesel Technology, Healthcare, Automotive Technology and Dual Credit. The enrollment upsurge reflects the desire for students to insure a return on their investment and Lake Area Tech’s commitment to provide a skilled workforce for the region.

 With the continued growth of the current student body, the campus expansion plan will address additional space needs for labs and classrooms.  The building expansions, which are under construction and scheduled to be completed in 2024, include a Diesel Technology addition, the Dana J. Dykhouse Business Center of Learning, the Advanced Manufacturing Center, and a connecting archway.   Additionally, Custom Paint and Fabrication and an Aviation Center for Aviation Maintenance, Professional Fixed-Wing Pilot and UAS programs are part of future expansion projects. 

Lake Area Tech’s accomplishments tell the story of continued excellence, including a 99% placement rate after graduation, the creative delivery of education, strong industry partnerships, solid retention rates, and high-demand degrees.  Lake Area Tech was named the 2017 recipient of the National Aspen Prize for Community College Excellence, which recognizes the outstanding learning outcomes, retention, degree completion, employment and earnings, and success for minority and low-income students.