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DMACC Enrollment + Workforce Trends in 2021

DMACC 2021 Trends

October 12, 2021


During the Greater Des Moines Partnership’s Future Ready DSM podcast, guests share insights about the employment landscape for people entering the workforce, as well as those looking to advance or change their career paths with The Partnership’s Senior Vice President of Talent Development Dr. Marvin DeJear. 

Rob Denson, first native born Iowan president of Des Moines Area Community College (DMACC), joined the Future Ready DSM podcast to discuss changes in enrollment trends, education pathways and community partnerships with Greater Des Moines (DSM) and Iowa employers. 

Enrollment + Workforce Trends

The pandemic has caused a decline in enrollment at nearly every college and university across the nation. Denson said in the past 18 months, average enrollment at community colleges has been down 9%. While DMACC enrollment has previously been down 7%; in this fall term, DMACC’s enrollment is up 6.1%.

Denson said that at DMACC, recruiting from diverse populations is the solution to Iowa’s workforce challenges in the short-term. Diversifying recruitment strategies will change enrollment into the future, including through hiring a diverse faculty/staff so that students see individuals like themselves. In a learning environment, Denson said it’s important for students to feel comfortable. Currently, over 30% of new hires are of diverse backgrounds.

Preparing for the Future World of Work

At DMACC, each program is monitored by an advisory committee of the businesses that hire students out of those programs. If students aren’t finding jobs in a certain program, that program is closed. Denson said this allows them to be on the cutting edge of technology, skill development and competency delivery.

Denson went on to discuss the Evelyn K. Davis Center for Working Families at the urban campus, which serves more than 5,000 clients each year, guiding them with clothing advice, additional interview and technical skills and more. United Way of Central Iowa and the Community Foundation of Greater Des Moines are leading DMACC partners in this area. 

With six campuses across the state, including AnkenyBooneCarrollNewtonUrban/Des Moines and West Des Moines, DMACC is certainly accessible to a wide range of students. Still, the addition of the school’s Career Academies creates accessibility for even more individuals, with the following training centers in and around DSM: AmesCapitol, Evelyn K. Davis, PerrySouthridge and the Transportation Institute

Along with enrollment trends and preparing students for work, Denson also discussed student debt, college transfer students, STEM growth and programming on DMACC’s campus and more.

For more information on DMACC, visit dmacc.edu

Listen to the entire podcast here.

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The Future Ready DSM podcast brings Greater Des Moines (DSM) employment leaders and experts in to discuss the latest trends in talent attraction and retention in the region. Hosted by Greater Des Moines Partnership Senior Vice President of Talent Development Dr. Marvin DeJear.

Future Ready DSM

The Future Ready DSM Podcast brings Greater Des Moines (DSM) employment leaders and experts in to discuss the latest trends in talent attraction and retention in the region.