BY CHASE SCHERR firstname.lastname@example.org
MSUM has officially reached an increase in undergraduate enrollment this fall. Additionally, graduate enrollment for this year has reached its highest point ever in recent years, according to statistics.
This fall semester of 2019, the university has welcomed 1,512 undergraduate students, an increase from the 1,495 that was achieved last year, says a census that was released 30 days after classes had begun. While achieving a high rate for undergraduates, MSUM has also had an increase in graduate enrollment as well. According to reports, there are a total of 1,076 students, another increase that surpassed the previous fall semester.
“We are very satisfied (with enrollment this year),” said Vice President of Student Affairs Brenda Amenson-Hill. “But I think it’s something we definitely need to pay attention to. We are here to meet the needs of students and the community in the region, which is our primary mission.”
As a whole, the university’s enrollment is 5,751 students for the year. North Dakota State University stated that it had a 4% decrease with 13,796 last fall to 13,173 this semester.
Reports have also circulated saying that international enrollment has decreased again this year. These statistics have been falling since 2016. The rate this year is 251 international students, compared to the 290 international students that were enrolled last year.
“MSUM really wants to appeal to international students,” said Amenson-Hill. “We want to see that diversity on campus.”
“The way we’ve been promoting more non-U.S. living students is the school has a team of people who travel to some areas around Europe and Asia, and we try to get these students more aware of what can be in store for them,” said Amenson-Hill.
Amenson-Hill explained how the university wants to promote itself more around different parts of the midwestern area and expand upcoming graduate student’s awareness toward the campus.
“MSUM is founded on education,” said Amenson-Hill. “Many teachers are from MSUM. Superintendents, teachers, staff. If students want to get their graduate degrees, we can be the school of choice for that area. There’s nothing more amazing than giving that opportunity to people, and we value that.”
Possible reasoning for what caused such a low number in enrollment in previous years has to do with less state funding. Fewer schools in Minnesota are getting funding for resources, causing a possible increase in tuition.
Another troubling factor for the university has been caused by the cutting of certain programs. The university has 82 majors and 11 pre-professional study programs, and they have been actively advocating for the continuation of these programs.
“For as small of a school as we are, we still have an amazing array of majors, and we try to give people more options for what they want to do for jobs,” Amenson-Hill said. “What the university is trying to do to combat having these programs taken away is we are trying to approach (getting) more funding from the state. We are searching for ways to make sure these programs stay within our curriculum.”