Wisconsin college students leaving school without credentials is on the rise 

According to Wisconsin Public Radio, new data from the National Student Clearinghouse Research Center has found that more than 746,000 Wisconsinites have left college without finishing their degree or certificate programs. 

Around 80% of these students, or over 600,000, last attended a two-year college; about 14%, or over 107,000, last attended a four-year UW System school; and just 5%, almost 37,000, last attended a private, nonprofit university. 

Since the 2020–21 school year, the number of students in the state who have left college without receiving credentials has grown by 3.1%, while the national increase was 3.6%.  

Forty-three percent of all former college students who have not finished their studies are students from racial and ethnic minority groups; the data does not show why students left college and correlates the drop with enrollment declines during the pandemic era.  

The majority of all students who re-enrolled chose a public, two-year college. Since 2020, two private universities in Wisconsin have announced impending closures due to declining enrollment.