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Posted on: January 31, 2017   |   Category: News


January 31, 2017


 WATERTOWN, SD  –  Lake Area Technical College President Mike Cartney announces that Lake Area Technical College enrollment continues its remarkable upward trend this spring semester, topping last year’s numbers by an overall 12% increase. With 328 new students entering spring-start programs, the overall enrollment to date is 2393 students.

President Cartney comments, “Our goal was to top 2300 students by the end of summer 2017. Having done so sooner than expected is good for the college, the community, the region, and in turn good for South Dakota’s workforce.”  The continued success of the college can be attributed to the highly-skilled instructors and the outstanding programs they have developed, the outstanding students who choose to attend Lake Area Technical College, and the employers who hire the graduates.  Cartney continues, “Lake Area Technical College is privileged to experience the continued growth and overwhelming success of its graduates. Our current student population is what we projected to have by the year 2040 which defies the national trend of declining community college enrollment.”

Lake Area Technical College offers 28 programs of study as well as 12 online E-degrees.  The college has a consistent retention rate of 80%, the highest graduation rates in the nation at 79%, and a 99% placement rate of its graduates.  For the fourth consecutive time, LATI is one of the nation’s top 10 community colleges, making it eligible for the 2017 Aspen Prize for Community College Excellence, to be announced in March.  Lake Area Technical College was named an Aspen Prize for Community College Excellence Finalist with Distinction in 2011, 2013, and 2015.

Cartney said, “Our strong K14 approach, Build Dakota and Stretch-the-Million Scholarships, and notoriety from the Aspen Prize for College Excellence are all key contributors to our growth. Our exceptional staff, great industry partners and strong community and statewide support help make LATI a magical place for students.”