SOUTH PORTLAND — Enrollment in Maine’s community colleges is up 9.6 percent over last fall, an increase of 1,576 students, system officials announced today.

In the eight years since the seven institutions made the transition from technical to community colleges, enrollment has grown 77 percent, from 10,127 to 17,967 students.

John Fitzsimmons, president of the Maine Community College System, also announced that a fundraising campaign, launched in January to raise $10 million to help the colleges serve more students, has raised $6.4 million.