HAGERSTOWN, Md. (AP) — Hagerstown Community College has jumped ahead of all other community colleges in Maryland in enrollment growth.

The Maryland Higher Education Commission says enrollment at HCC grew by 6.8 percent this fall. That’s the highest-percentage increase in the state. It was also a stronger growth rate than all the four-year colleges in the state university system.

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The Herald-Mail of Hagerstown reports that the growth was fueled by part-time enrollment. Full-time enrollment was actually down, but part-time enrollment increased by 12.4 percent.

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HCC President Guy Altieri notes that the college began allowing students to take two courses in one night and has several new online offerings. He also says the difficulty of paying for college is leading more students to go part-time.

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