Has the number of college-bound students peaked?

A recent New York Times article explores the link between decreasing college enrollment and the growing job market and economy. It cites recent figures from smaller colleges and universities as evidence that these institutions will be negatively impacted for years to come.

Census figures show that college enrollment dropped 2% last year, the first time since the 1990s. What does this mean for smaller community colleges and universities? It means the potential for budget cutbacks due to empty dorms and classrooms. Many enrollment officials have taken to following up with applicants in an attempt to change their minds – but with limited success.

Time will tell if these schools can survive. In the meantime, the elite Harvards and M.I.T.s of the world continue to attract and turn away students as they have in the past.

Do you think this trend will continue?