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Ranger School enrollment is down

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WANAKENA — Starting enrollment at the Ranger School is down, but numbers are close to previous years.

The school started the year with 47 students, but two people departed almost immediately, leaving the school with an enrollment of 45.

“It’s acceptable, but we would have hoped for a higher number,” Director Christopher L. Westbrook said. “Our projected numbers were a lot higher, but it just dropped off.”

Last year, the school started with 59 students but one left. That student returned this year.

The addition of a third area of study — environmental and natural resources conservation — last year increased enrollment at the school to its highest level in more than two decades.

In years past, the school’s average annual enrollment has been 40 to 45 students for its forestry and land surveying technology majors.

This year’s class basically is split between environmental conservation and forestry majors. Four students declared a major in surveying.

The surveying major is usually smaller because it is limited to a maximum of 15 students, Mr. Westbrook said.

The Ranger School, a division of the State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry, Syracuse, added land surveying technology as a major in 2004.

Most Ranger School students arrive on campus in their second year of either a two-year or a four-year program. At the end of their year at the school, they graduate with an associate degree in applied science. They then can continue with their education or look for work.

All students take the same courses the first semester and split up into their specialties in the second term.

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