As student enrollment numbers continue to multiply, many states find that local colleges and universities struggle to provide enough dorm beds to keep up with burgeoning demand for on-campus housing. The National Student Housing Council (NSHC), a part of the National Multi Housing Council (NMHC), recently analyzed data from both the U.S. Department of Education and the U.S. Census Bureau to identify areas where the shortages have become most acute. The analysis covered the 1999-2000 academic year through the 2009-2010 academic year.
Key takeaways from the analysis include:
- Student enrollments increased nationally 38.7 percent from the start of the fall 1999-2000 academic year to the start of the 2009-2010 academic year. While every state saw enrollment increases, some states, such as Arizona, District of Columbia, Georgia, Iowa, Minnesota and West Virginia, experienced some of the greatest surges in enrollment.
- As student populations have grown, many states are housing more students on campus in dorms. Nationally, the number of students who live in on-campus dorms grew approximately 21.4 percent. Arizona, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii and Utah experienced some of the biggest upticks in dorm population growth.
- Despite net increases in the number of students housed in dorms, many states saw declines in the percentage of enrolled students living in dorms. This trend was most pronounced in the Midwest region, with Indiana, Iowa and North Dakota posting some of the largest drops.
- Most states have been unable to maintain the same percentage of students housed in dorms as enrollment numbers have increased over time. Only five states (California, Florida, Hawaii, Maryland and Utah) have been able to provide enough additional dorm beds to maintain dorm residency levels against growing enrollments.