Several key factors have contributed to enrollment growth of 76% system wide in the past five years. The removal of barriers including fees and strict admissions requirements has been critical to ensuring equitable access. Campuses system-wide enhanced their marketing efforts, and existing relationships between high schools and universities were strengthened while new partnerships were created. State investment enabled campuses to add staff to provide direct student support and college advising, and to serve as liaisons between high schools and universities. The ExplorEC portal made it easier for all students to access courses, regardless of their geographic location or high school participation level. Homeschool families have also realized the value and benefits, and almost 300 homeschool students have accessed Early College (EC) courses since fall 2019.  Most recently, campuses have responded to the needs of high schools as demand surged in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Enrollment highlights by campus:

  • The University of Maine (UMaine) previously offered a limited number of seats in their Academ-e program which targeted high achieving students. In order to avoid competition, UMaine focused on growth in summer programming, while also expanding equitable opportunities to all students during the school year. UMaine employed specific initiatives to increase student supports by adding additional staffing using Master of Social Work (MSW) interns and graduate student workers when possible.
  • The University of Maine at Augusta (UMA) has offered a high-quality concurrent enrollment (CE) program, and has been key to the success of the Bridge Academy partnership with Career and Technical Education (CTE) high schools. UMA’s has unique partnerships with high schools in target areas such as aviation and CIS/cyber security.
  • The University of Maine at Farmington (UMF) was the only campus that did not have a specific EC program. Initial growth was focused on private schools, but recent shifts to online opportunities have provided critical courses (e.g. calculus) as well as unique career exploration offerings (e.g. rehabilitation services). UMF has committed to EC growth in their recently developed strategic plan, and will be hiring a dedicated, full-time EC Director in the near future.
  • The University of Maine at Fort Kent’s (UMFK) RuralU program has been a model for access and success for underserved students. This program was already large and widespread, so has shown modest growth. However, the UMFK has continued to be a leader in innovation with new offerings such as Early College+ (online courses offered to a cohort of students with embedded high school support), pathways development, and an initiative to provide students their first year of nursing credentials before graduating from high school.
  • The University of Maine at Machias (UMM) had a small EC program focused primarily in Washington County. With the system-appropriation, UMM created a dedicated full-time EC Director position, which has resulted in significant growth in headcount and partnerships with high schools statewide. UMM is also piloting the addition of select concurrent enrollment courses as well as incentives for admission to UMM and other University of Maine System (UMS) campuses. UMM has 14 Early College Certificates- ten of which can be earned fully online.
  • The University of Maine at Presque Isle’s (UMPI) EC program enrollment is largely focused on CE programs. UMPI has developed procedures and processes to support faculty and high school teacher collaboration while working towards meeting accreditation standards.
  • The University of Southern Maine (USM) had a well-established and longstanding program in math, providing statistics and calculus CE courses statewide, and have since added CE courses in other content areas such as foreign languages, physics, and environmental science. Over the last year, USM has also seen increased student interest and participation in online and on-campus courses. In response to System and state-wide policy changes, combined with campus-level staff commitments, USM now supports the largest early college program.

Early College Enrollment (Sum of Unduplicated Headcount at Each Institution):

Early College Enrollment Bar Graph - Text Only Description Linked below
Accessible text-only description for Early College Enrollment Bar Graph

Student Enrollment in Early College Students by Institution, Program, and Academic Year:

University of Maine (UMaine)

Program 2015-16 2016-17 2017-18 2018-19 2019-20
Online/On campus 203 201 222 380 547
Bridge Academy 114 87 7 34 12
Concurrent Enrollment (at the high school) 0 0 0 20 60
Total EC (includes duplicates) 317 288 229 434 619
Total Students Served (Unduplicated1) 317 288 229 429 617

University of Maine at Augusta (UMA)

Program 2015-16 2016-17 2017-18 2018-19 2019-20
Online/On campus 141 244 414 549 475
Bridge Academy 213 234 167 148 122
Concurrent Enrollment 67 15 11 19 439
Total EC (includes duplicates) 421 493 592 716 1,036
Total Students Served (Unduplicated1) 419 493 591 667 983

University of Maine at Farmington (UMF)

Program 2015-16 2016-17 2017-18 2018-19 2019-20
Online/On campus 18 10 9 19 21
Concurrent Enrollment 8 61 184 110
Total EC (includes duplicates) 18 18 70 203 131
Total Students Served (Unduplicated1) 18 18 70 200 131

University of Maine at Fort Kent (UMFK)

Program 2015-16 2016-17 2017-18 2018-19 2019-20
Online/On campus 293 368 309 315 386
Bridge Academy 0 31 7 5 0
Concurrent Enrollment 362 506 498 555 487
Total EC (includes duplicates) 655 905 814 875 873
Total Students Served (Unduplicated1) 602 849 778 808 809

University of Maine at Machias (UMM)

Program 2015-16 2016-17 2017-18 2018-19 2019-20
Online/On campus 127 123 143 165 236
Total EC (includes duplicates) 127 123 143 165 236
Total Students Served (Unduplicated1) 127 123 143 165 236

University of Maine at Presque Isle (UMPI)

Program 2015-16 2016-17 2017-18 2018-19 2019-20
Online/On campus 171 143 165 152 119
Concurrent Enrollment 281 392 487 572 547
Total EC (includes duplicates) 452 535 652 724 666
Total Students Served (Unduplicated1) 426 506 608 679 641

University of Southern Maine (USM)

Program 2015-16 2016-17 2017-18 2018-19 2019-20
Online/On campus 136 190 191 282 322
Bridge Academy 0 11 4 0 0
Concurrent Enrollment 574 628 537 650 986
Total EC (includes duplicates) 710 829 732 932 1,308
Total Students Served (Unduplicated1) 703 824 729 896 1,270

University of Maine System (UMS)

Totals 2015-16 2016-17 2017-18 2018-19 2019-20
Sum of Each Institution’s Unduplicated Headcount1 2,612 3,101 3,148 3,844 4,687
Total Unique Number of EC Students Served2 2,383 2,793 2,909 3,513 4,183
Students Served by Multiple Institutions 229 308 239 331 504


  1. Unduplicated EC Student Headcount -represents the distinct number of students enrolled in that institution’s EC programs (for example, a student enrolled in online/on campus and Bridge Year at UMaine is counted once in each of those programs and only once in UMaine’s Unduplicated EC Headcount). The difference between the institution Total and the Unduplicated Headcount represents the number of EC students participating in multiple types of EC programs at that institution.
  2. Total Unique Number of Students Served – At the system level each student is counted only once per academic year, no matter how many EC programs or institutions they enrolled in that year.
  3. Data for 2018-19 reflect the implementation of a new coding scheme for EC to better reflect simultaneous participation in multiple programs.

Summer 2020 Enrollment:

Summer enrollment in 2020 almost doubled from the previous year. This is likely due, in part, to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. After months of emergency online high school instruction and lockdowns, students had time in their schedules and were eager for an opportunity to engage in college-level online courses. Summer sessions can be challenging for high school students, however, because of the shortened time-frame and intensive approach.

Summer UMS EC Enrollment (Unduplicated) - Text-only description linked below
Accessible text-only description for Summer UMS EC Enrollment (Unduplicated) Bar Graph

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