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Higher education enrollments for fall 2019 declined for the eighth consecutive year, finds the National Student Clearinghouse Research Center.

Overall enrollments declined from last fall by 1.3 percent -- more than 231,000 students -- to 17.9 million students. This was the case for all kinds of institution types: public four-years, public two-years, private nonprofit four-years and private for-profit four-years.

Fifteen states, particularly in the South and West, saw enrollment increases. Utah led the enrollment increase by 16,800 students -- almost a 5 percent jump from last year.

Florida was at the bottom of the pack, losing 52,328 students. The Sunshine State also led the country in declining enrollments in spring 2019.

The report additionally found that over the past four years, the average age of full-time undergraduates dropped from 22 to 21, and first-time enrollments for 18- to 24-year-olds decreased at all institutions excluding public two-year institutions, while the number of students over 24 decreased at all institutions.

For the second fall in a row, public two-year institutions had an increase of dual-enrolled students under 18.