53+ College Student Statistics 2024 (Data, Facts & Trends)

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The world is changing rapidly, and so is the life of college students. Higher education trends have shown tremendous change, and college students are on the verge of adapting to them.

The education system in the United States provides diverse educational options to students, providing various valuable degrees and leading to great employment opportunities. 

To learn more about the enrollments, lifestyle, and health-related stats of college students, go through the below article.

The data compiled in this article demonstrates some interesting information and stats about college students. 

So, without any delay, let’s dive into the article. 

Key Findings

  1. Approximately 18.66 million individuals in the United States will be college students in 2023. 
  2. As per Common App Research Brief, around 800,000+ students have applied for first-year college applications for 2024-2025 across 870+ colleges. However, there are no prominent signs of an increase in admissions for 2024 yet.
  3. Around 16 million students are enrolled in degree-granting universities and colleges in the United States.
  4. About 9.5 million college students in the United States are females, and 7.1 million are males.
  5. Around 2.8 million students are enrolled in graduate programs such as doctoral degrees, master’s degrees, professional degrees, and graduate-level certification programs. 
  6. Nearly 66.6% of college students are aged 24 years or under. 
  7. 39% of Americans, 25 years or above, have a bachelor’s degree, whereas 74.5% of students aged 18 or 19 years are enrolled in schools of any type. 
  8. Pacific Islander, Black, and American Indian/Alaska Native students have higher dropout rates as compared to Hispanic, White, and Asian students.
  9. The student loan debt in the United States is around $1.745 trillion. Around 42.8 million borrowers have federal student loan debt. 
  10. Around 80% of college students consume alcohol. 
  11. According to Statista, by the year 2030, 15.1 million college students will go to public colleges. 
  12. According to a study conducted by the Higher Education Research Institute at UCLA, a quarter of college students spend at least six hours a week on social media. 
  13. 34% of college students in the United States have an anxiety disorder. 
  14. According to the estimates by the National Center for Education Statistics, one-fifth of college students are parents. 

College Student Enrollment Statistics

Education plays a crucial role when it comes to great employment opportunities and higher salaries, and colleges or universities act as bridges between them.

College Student Statistics - Enrollment

After a continuous rise in college enrollment since 1970, a decline has been demonstrated from the year 2010. 

  1. Around 15.9 million students were enrolled in post-secondary education in the United States.
  2. Nearly 73%, or 11.6 million students, were enrolled in bachelor’s or associate degree programs. 
  3. About 18%, or 2.9 million students, were enrolled in graduate-level programs in the United States. 

To get a complete insight into college student enrollment statistics, check out the data provided below. 

Enrollment By Race Ethnicity

  1. Around 54.1%  of the students enrolled in college are white, and 7.4% of the students are Asia

To know more about the enrollment of college students as per ethnicity, go through the table below. The table below shows the enrollment of the students in the college as per ethnicity for the year 2020. 

EthnicitiesPercentage of students enrolled. Students Enrolled
White55%10.5 million
Asian7%1.4 million
Pacific Islander0.2%42,000
Hispanic21%4 million
Two or more races3%612,000
Black13%2.5 million
American Indian/ Alaska Native 0.5%82,000

Source: NCES

Enrollment By Degree Level

  1. Total enrollment in degree-granting postsecondary institutions in Fall 2020 was 19.7 million students (source: National Center for Education Statistics)
  2. Around 47.6% of students were enrolled in bachelor’s degree programs and 24% in associate degree programs.
  3. Undergraduate enrollment in the Fall of 2020 was 16.9 million students. This includes 13.1 million full-time and 3.8 million part-time students. (source: NCES)
  4. Between 2019 and 2020, total undergraduate enrollment decreased by 3.4% due to declining enrollment at community colleges and 4-year institutions during the COVID-19 pandemic. (source: NCES)

The data provided below shows complete information about the enrollment of college students depending on degree level for the year 2022. 

Degree Level.Enrollment (In Percentage)
Associate degree24%
Bachelor’s degree47.6%
Graduate or professional 17.5%
Other Undergraduate 10%

Source: NSCRC

Enrollment By Age

  1. 9,674,810 enrollments were reported for the year 2022 of the students belonging to the age group of 18 to 24 years. 
  2. The students aged between 18 to 19 years and 20 to 21 years are the maximum ones, with 45.1% and 49.0%, to get enrolled in colleges. 

Here is the percentage of enrollment of college students according to their ages provided below. 

Age GroupsPercentage Of Enrollments 
15 years and under0.7%
16 and 17 years1.4%
18 and 19 years45.1%
20 and 21 years 49.0%
22 to 24 years 25.1%
25 to 29 years11.1%
30 to 34 years5.2%
35 to 44 years2.6%
45 to 54 years1.3%
55 years and above0.2%

Source: NCES 

  1. As per the data from NSCRC, the average age of full-time undergraduate students was almost 23 years.
Type Of StudentAverage Age. 
Undergraduate full-time22.7
Undergraduate part-time27.5
Graduate/professional students full-time30.4
Graduate/professional students part-time35.5

Source: NSCRC

Enrollment by Gender

  1. About 6.65 million male undergraduate students were enrolled in degree-granting postsecondary institutions in 2020. 
  2. In comparison, 9.2 million undergraduate female students were enrolling in the same year. These numbers are anticipated to rise to 7.39 million and 9.76 million, respectively, by 2030.

Let’s have a look at the undergraduate enrollment by gender in the United States. 2010 to 2030 (predicted)

(Source: Statista)

YearMale (In Thousands)Female (In Thousands)

Enrollment By State

  1. California has the highest number of about 2,012,874 enrolled college students in the spring of 2022. 

To know the state-wise enrollment of college students, go through the data below. In the table, I have mentioned the top 10 U.S. states having maximum enrollments. 

StatesCollege Enrollment
New York901,547

Source: NSCRC

College Dropout Statistics

More than one million students drop out of college every year due to financial issues, family responsibilities, dissatisfaction with the course, etc. However, the dropout rates have decreased steadily in the last few decades. 

  1. Around 24% of first-time, full-time undergraduate first-year students dropped out of college between 2019 and 2020. 
  2. The dropout rate for first-time, full-time undergraduate students has decreased by almost five percentage points since 2006-2007.
  3. The average dropout rate of men is higher by four percentage points than that of women. 
  4. It is demonstrated that women tended to complete their degrees within four years at a rate of 26% higher than men. 
  5. The first-year student dropout rate for 2016 was 24.5%, whereas it decreased to 28.3% for 2018. 
  6. As per the survey conducted in 2021 among 3,236 individuals aged between 18 and 34, the reason why they dropped out of college was financial strains and family or personal issues. 
  7. Pacific Islanders, Blacks, and American Indian/Alaska Natives have the same dropout rates as those of other races. 

To know the college student dropout rate by ethnicity, go through the data provided below. 

Ethnicities% Of Students Dropped Out 
American Indian/Alaska Native41.1%
Black 39.7%
Pacific Islander 38.2%
Hispanic 30.1%
Two or more races25.7%

Source: NCES

College Student Loan Debt Statistics

  1. In the second financial quarter of 2022, the national student loan debt increased by 1.53%. 

To learn more about student loan debt statistics, go through the table demonstrating the student loan debt from the year 2011 to 2021. 

YearTotalYear-Over-Year Change (In Percent) 

Source: Education Data Initiative. 

  1. Around 32.2% of student borrowers owe an amount of $10,000 or less in federal debt, whereas 74.2% owe a sum of $40,000 or less. 

Employment Statistics Of College Students

Employment opportunities help students earn a great sum for miscellaneous expenses. 

  1. Around 70% of college students who majored in Computer Science received placement even before graduating.
  2. Annually, undergraduate degree college students earn $32,000 more than high school graduates. 
  3. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the salaries of entry-level jobs for college students fell from $59,765 to $54,585 in 2019.
  4. 23% of undergraduate college students work for more than 20 hours per week in order to be able to afford college expenses. 

College Student Health And Lifestyle Statistics

The lifestyle of the students determines their way of living, which could be healthy as well as unhealthy depending on their personal choices and has a great impact on their health. 

Here are a few fascinating facts about the lifestyle and health of college students. 

  1. Coming to sleep deprivation in college students, it is demonstrated that the average college student sleeps between 6 to 6.9 hours per night. 
  2. Considering the college student’s exercise statistics, it is seen that around 40% to 45% of college students exercise three times a week. 
  3. On average, caffeine consumption among college students is 173mg per day. 
  4. Inappropriate and unhealthy dietary habits are frequent issues among college students. It is demonstrated that around 33.4% of college students skip breakfast daily
  5. According to the University Business, it was demonstrated that college students reduced drinking by 28% at the onset of the pandemic.
  6. As per Statista, 24.1% of college students reports heavy use of alcohol one time within two weeks. 

Student Mental Health Statistics

  1. As per the research conducted, the reason cited by around 64% of young adults for not attending college was because of mental health issues. 
  2. Suicide is the second most frequent cause of death among college students. The pressure of college life may create stress, leading to suicide. 
  3. Several students struggle with anxiety and depression, but it is found that only 10% of students seek counseling for their mental issues. 

Student Parent Statistics

Below are some of the interesting student-parent statistics that you can check out. 

  1. There are nearly four million college students who have children. 
  2. 29% of community college students are parents.
  3. Out of 3.8 million college students who are parents, nearly 70% or 2.7 million students are mothers, and 30% or 1.1 million students are fathers. 
  4. Around 62% of mothers in college are single parents, whereas 61% of female students are married. 

Related Read:

Conclusion: College Student Statistics (2024)

College life is a lot more fun and exposes one to various bittersweet experiences that were not familiar earlier. It is the phase of growth, development, and stress.

Along with the fun and memories, the life of college students is compiled with the bundles of responsibilities, changes in eating and sleeping habits, lack of time for self-care, etc. 

That’s all for college students’ statistics. The article has covered the statistics of college students’ enrollment, dropout rate, student loan debts, health and lifestyle, etc. 

I hope this article was interesting and worth reading. Let us know your thoughts and queries, if any, in the comments section below. 


What percentage of high school graduates enroll in college the following year?

In 2020, 63% of students who graduated from high school enrolled in a 2- or 4-year college immediately after completing high school. This is known as the college enrollment rate.

How many hours per week does the average college student spend studying?

One survey found that full-time college students reported studying for an average of 17.3 hours per week. However, study time varied significantly, with 25% studying 5 hours or less per week.

How much student loan debt do most graduates have?

Among graduates of the class of 2019, the average student loan debt balance was $28,950. However, averages obscure the fact that many graduates have balances exceeding $50,000 or $100,000.

Lana Rose

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