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 Author: almilligan
PostPosted: Wed Oct 25, 2017 6:21 pm 
“We’re down 324 undergraduate students. Of those, 247 are dual enrolled,” WNMU President Dr. Joseph Shepard said.

This 10% drop in enrollment is the largest in my memory.

A few facts about Dual Credit classes at Western:
Western’s Dual Credit Program generates about 6,000 credit hours per year or about 400 FTEs.
Western has about 700 dual credit students per semester.
About 60% attend classes at the University and about 40% attend regular High School Classes with regular High School teachers. For which they’re given college credit.

Western says, “In analyzing this fall’s census data, Western New Mexico University found that the 10 percent drop in enrollment this year was largely due to the decrease in dual enrollment students. In examining the causes, WNMU found a correlation between the decline and the loss in qualified instructors, due to the Higher Learning Commission’s new accreditation requirements.

The instructors Western is talking about are regular high school teachers that teach dual credit classes at their high school

The “new accreditation requirements” were actually issued in June 2015 to take effect Sept 1, 2017. Western had over 2 years to vet the high school teachers and if Western felt they needed more time the Higher Learning Commission would give them an extension until 2022. Why the surprise?

The new regulation says that instructors that teach Bachelor level classes must have a master’s degree in the area they’re teaching, a Master’s in Education is not sufficient

This whole loss of students is a giant administrative boondoggle. Eastern New Mexico has about the same number of Dual Credit students as Western and must abide by the same regulations as Western but this year its enrollment has actually increased. What is Eastern doing different than Western?

The thing that boggles the mind is that even with the largest decline in enrollment in memory at Western, due entirely to administrative mismanagement, President Shepard can still get his $50,000 plus bonus by completing the five trivial goals he negotiated with the Regents.

I now see why none of the goals the President negotiated was an increase in enrollment even though Western is in a multimillion dollar recruitment program. Instead he negotiated such trivial goals as adding $100,000 to the assets of the Athletic Department, besides the jocks, who cares? President Shepard has shown his mastery over the Board of Regents again. All he needs to do is reach 5 trivial goals that have no bearing on the future of Western and he gets $50,000 or maybe even more.

Large decreases in enrollment such as this will draw the politicians’ interest to Western and Western may end up the Silver City Branch of New Mexico State.


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 Author: pekeclooney
PostPosted: Thu Oct 26, 2017 10:39 am 
So, I'm slightly confused. Does this mean WNMU has been paying current local High School teachers to teach the dual enrollment class in the local high schools? The foundation of requiring dual enrollment classes for NM students was for them to experience a college classroom environment and the structure of college classes (and college professors), not sit in their same high school classrooms to be taught by the same teachers.

I do know many High School teachers that are highly qualified, but the point of the requirement is to make students step outside their comfort zone to embrace a college environment to hopefully take advantage of the NM Lottery Scholarship available by seeing the excitement college life has offer. Seems WNMU is missing the perfect opportunity by not requiring students to attend classes on campus.

More worrisome, is WNMU supplementing the consolidated schools' budget for staffing with this program?


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 Author: almilligan
PostPosted: Thu Oct 26, 2017 6:54 pm 
As far as I know, the University does not pay the high school teachers for teaching Dual Credit students. The classes are regular high school classes that the University departments certifies is equivalent to a course at Western.

I suppose the state lets the high schools teach dual credit classes because of places like Lordsburg where is no college for them to attend.


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 Author: digitalwiz
PostPosted: Fri Oct 27, 2017 9:38 am 
When my son was in high school, from 2005 to 2009, he took dual enrollment classes on campus at Western.


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 Author: almilligan
PostPosted: Sun Oct 29, 2017 4:52 pm 
My grandson took two dual credit classes from Western. One was taken on Western's campus, he attended a regular history course with regular Western college students. The other was taken at Silver High School, a regular high school class from a Silver High School faculty.

People going to Silver High tell me that Silver High is phasing out dual credit classes in favor of advanced placement (AP) classes.


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