Student population drops by 30%

Jamaica Plain’s student population has dropped by nearly one-third in the past year, according to an annual City census.

In fall 2014, JP’s reported student population was 1,168: 637 grad students and 531 undergrads. That means about 3 percent of JP residents are students, though the number is likely to be slightly higher due to the census’s reporting methods.

The numbers are down from 2013, when the count was 1,675 students. The bigger decline was in the graduate population, which dropped by 416 in the past year. The undergrad population was down by 91 students.

The top five sources of students living off-campus in JP are: Northeastern University with 317; New England Conservatory of Music with 121; Simmons College and Berkelee College of Music tied at 80; and Boston College with 67. Students from about 30 colleges live in the neighborhood.

The neighborhood student population count is required under the University Accountability Ordinance. It requires a census, self-reported by educational institutions, of all students living both on-campus and off-campus.

The student census is intended to shed light on the crowding of off-campus undergraduates into certain neighborhoods, especially Mission Hill. Mission Hill, while about half the size of JP, is home to over 2,000 undergrads.

There are various quirks in the census that mean the actual student population is higher. The student census applies only to the 02130 ZIP code area, which excludes parts of Egleston Square and Woodbourne. The census also only reports the student population of private, Boston-based schools—which means UMass Boston is not included, nor are any of Harvard’s Cambridge-based schools.

Some schools that are exempt report voluntarily anyway. They include the Massachusetts College of Art and Design, which is a state school, and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, which is in Cambridge.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *