COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) --Ohio State University reports declining enrollment at its five regional branch campuses around the state.
Enrollment at the branch campuses peaked in 2009, but since then has dropped more than 20 percent. The 6,500 students who attended classes at the branches last year was the lowest in a decade.
Bill MacDonald, the executive dean of the regional campuses, tells The Columbus Dispatch that it's happening because of declining birthrates.
Because there are fewer students, the number of high school graduates has slipped by about 4 percent over the past five years. The regional campuses have been hit particularly hard because they draw students mostly from within the state.
However, enrollment at Ohio State's main campus in Columbus has boomed over the same period.