Enrollment up for the Spring 2024 semester

Feb. 7, 2024

SARANAC LAKE – Enrollment is up for the third consecutive semester at North Country Community College, which started Spring 2024 classes on Jan. 22.

The growth in enrollment this semester is fueled in part by the expansion of the college’s nursing program, the awarding of thousands of dollars in new scholarship funding, and successful student retention initiatives.

North Country has three locations – Malone, Saranac Lake and Ticonderoga – and also offers classes online and at the St. Regis Mohawk Tribal Administration Building.


While official numbers won’t be available until the end of the verification period, the college started the spring semester with 617 students, up 8 percent over the 568 students enrolled at the start of the Spring 2023 semester.

“Thanks go out to our Enrollment team for their work over the last year in landing this class as well as to all who have helped advance our Strategic Enrollment Management plan and retain our students,” said college President Joe Keegan. “We are excited to see this upward trend, and we are working hard to see that it continues.”

Another indicator of strong interest in the college’s degree and certificate programs is application volume, which has increased for the fourth-consecutive semester. Applications for the spring semester were up 35 percent, from 321 last spring to 434 this year.

Nursing Expansion

Typically, the college starts its existing nursing programs – the two-year AAS Nursing Degree and one-year Practical Nursing Certificate – in the fall semester. This spring, North Country launched a new, hybrid Spring-Start Nursing program that is designed to help meet a growing demand for registered nurses in the region.

“This is an evening/weekend program to help prepare incoming LPNs for completion of the AAS Nursing program,” said Sarah Maroun, Interim Vice President of Academic Affairs. “The program is a hybrid format with lectures delivered remotely in the evening and clinical rotations on the weekends.”

The Spring Start program is full, with a total of 29 students enrolled. More than $14,000 in scholarship funds were awarded to these students. The college received support from a SUNY High Needs grant to help expand its nursing program.

In addition to nursing, programs with enrollment growth this semester include Human Services, Chemical Dependency Counseling, Child and Family Services, Health Sciences, Wilderness Recreation Leadership, and the Humanities.

Spring Highlights

Other highlights this semester at North Country include:

  • Completion of a major capital project. This is the first semester students are taking classes and learning in new state-of-the-art nursing labs on all three campuses and upgraded science labs on the Saranac Lake and Malone campuses.
  • Scholarship Funding. North Country provided Foundation Opportunity Scholarships and 6 on Us Scholarships to nearly 50 students this semester. Earlier this month, the college announced more than $50,000 in scholarship funds provided by Franklin County through their Opioid Settlement Funds. These scholarships are available to Franklin County residents who are interested in the college’s Chemical Dependency Counseling, Child and Family Services, Human Services and Advanced Emergency Medical Technician programs.
  • New Short-Term Offerings. The college has a new trio of Human Services microcredential programs – Direct Support Professional levels I, II and II – designed to prepare students for careers with agencies that serve people with developmental disabilities. This is in addition to other available short-term courses and trainings, including software engineering, Child Development Associate Certificate training and wastewater management.
  • The award of $1 million in SUNY Transformational Funding. Using these funds, which are designed to improve student success, support innovation, and help meet workforce needs, the college will hire a Director of Grants and Resource Development, and a Coordinator of Workforce Development and Continuing Education.

Keegan went on to note that “Through the efforts of many, the college has been able to make these and other investments in our facilities and programs, which, in the end, are investments in the students, families and communities we serve.”