- Associated Press - Monday, September 25, 2017

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) - Fewer students have enrolled at the Community College of Rhode Island in the first semester since it became free for many students, but the school says it’s seen a big jump in certain students.

CCRI spokesman Patrick Stone says Monday overall enrollment has fallen 2.3 percent since last year, but that enrollment of full-time students is up 2.8 percent. Students are taking more than 132,000 college credits, up 4.9 percent.

This is the first semester for the Rhode Island Promise program, which offers two years of free tuition at CCRI.

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Stone says 1,400 students qualify. He says there’s a 47 percent increase in first-time, full-time recent high school graduates from last year.

Stone says the jump in full-time students and credits is important because means a higher chance to graduate.

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