SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) – Despite challenges from the COVID-19 pandemic, the University System of Georgia (USG) says it awarded a record 70,879 degrees, the most in the system’s 89-year history.
There were over 3,000 more degrees awarded to USG students in 2020 than the year before.
“This success is thanks to the hard work of USG’s 26 public colleges and universities, which have taken critical steps to increase support and help students stay on track toward their degree,” USG Chancellor Steve Wrigley said. “I am especially grateful to our students, faculty and staff for all they do to ensure more Georgians enter the workforce with a college credential.”
According to USG, since 2011, the number of USG degrees awarded annually has increased by more than 29%. At the same time, USG enrollment over the same period has grown by less than 5%, meaning the rate of awarding degrees is far outstripping USG’s enrollment increases.
This news follows USG’s announcement in March that Georgia had experienced among the largest increases in the nation for six-year college completion rates, based on data from the National Student Clearinghouse Research Center.
The center released the data as part of its Completing College State Report, which tracked completion rates across five consecutive cohorts of first-time college students (2009-2013).
USG says over the last five years, the data show Georgia is up nine percentage points to 61% of students completing their degrees within six years of enrolling. Georgia over that same time period moved up 10 places to #20 in the state-by-state rankings.