MIAMI - Enrollment statistics reported by the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education, (OSRHE) indicate that overall enrollment at Oklahoma’s public colleges and universities has increased by 3.3 percent, (totaling 193,462 students), since 2009.

Since the 2008 economic downturn, enrollment at Oklahoma research universities grew by a mere 0.5 percent. Comparatively, Oklahoma community colleges have grown by 4.9 percent. Only two junior colleges in the state experienced a double-digit (percentile) increase in enrollment, one of which was Northeastern Oklahoma A&M College, (NEO) in Miami.

NEO has had the most growth in the state increasing by 28.9 percent in only a two-year time span; that’s more than any other junior college or four-year university in Oklahoma, according to the OSRHE 2009 annual report.

According to the OSRHE’s Counselor’s Resource Book, the 2010-2011 estimated student cost for resident students to attend a research university, (i.e. “OU”) averages $15, 369 per academic year (or two semesters), compared to an average of $8,285 at state, residential community colleges. This is a price difference in tuition of $7,084. These estimates are based on room and board in a traditional dormitory with a roommate and meal plan.

Assume a student attends OU for the duration of four years; the estimated cost would amount to $15, 728 in tuition expenses alone, (or $66, 880 when including the cost of room and board plus text books), according to the OU website. By attending NEO for two years and transferring to a four-year institution, a student would save approximately $8,000 in tuition expenses, according to student cost data from the OSRHE.

At $3,723.22 per year, NEO ranks in the top three most affordable junior colleges in the state for tuition expenses alone out of all Oklahoma community colleges, according to student cost data from the OSRHE.

Contrast NEO’s tuition costs with the two-year college with the highest tuition of $4,440.72 per year, excluding other expenses such as room and board or student fees.

NEO dominates in enrollment growth, and the college tops out with the highest enrollment increase in the state of Oklahoma for two consecutive years.