COD honors its largest graduating class



A past graduation ceremony illustrating the vast number of the graduating class. Photo Courtesy of Public Relations Office at College of the Desert

As College of the Desert continues to grow, so does its graduating class each year. This year COD boasts the largest graduating numbers in its 55 year history. More than 1,200 students are graduating this month and 490 are choosing to participate in the graduation ceremony on Friday, May 27.

With a diverse graduating class, COD sees people from all walks of life and from all over the world. Students come in preparation to transfer to a four-year university, earn a certificate and some older individuals came back to college years later. What they all have in common is hard work and dedication.

“There are 1,220 graduates this year making it yet again the largest graduating class ever.” said COD’s Interim Director of Community Relations James Meier. ” We are awarding 1,038 degrees and 182 certificates.”

In retrospect, each year shows a trend of an increasing number of students. During 2013-14, the school had a headcount of 12,816, the next year it increased to 13,428, then to 14,063 and as of last year, the count was 15,440 students, as recorded by COD’s Research Department. The graduating numbers follow this as well. Whether it is students receiving non-credit awards, certificates or degrees, each year shows the success rate increasing.

From 2013-2016 the graduation number expanded from 778 to 1,137 with 779 students alone receiving degrees. This year, those numbers have grown to 1,220 with 1,038 obtaining degrees.

The completion rate has steadily increased since 2008.  COD’s research department reports that since 2008 the rate went from 24.64 percent to 29.45 percent as of 2012. Since 1993 COD went from awarding associate of art degrees to 248 students to more than doubled that number in 2015 with 520.

With as many as 2,171 students enrolled so far in the Fall 2017 semester, College of the Desert shows no signs of a shortage of students deciding to attend and then graduate or transfer to a four-year university. To learn how to enroll at COD visit

An overlook of how many awards have been given by College of the Desert. Photo courtesy of College of the Desert’s research department.

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