Enrollment at UVU is expected to continue increasing into the fall semester, according to statistics being tracked by Institutional Research.
“Historically speaking, as the economy slows and job opportunities decrease, university enrollments generally increase,” said President Matthew Holland. “People come back to school to retool their skills and better position themselves in the economy.”
From the start of fall 2009 registration, enrollment data has been monitored daily and compared to the corresponding days of the 2008 fall semester. On June 29, student enrollment numbered 15,438 compared to the equivalent day in 2008 that numbered 12,708, constituting a 21.5 percent increase.
The number of full-time students is also increasing with 11,442.83 students enrolled for 2009 compared to the 9,479.37 students from last year, equaling a 20.7 percent increase.
Multi-cultural students, particularly Hispanics and Latinos, are seeing the largest population increase, which has risen by 20 percent. The number of transfer students has increased by more than 15 percent.
“Not only are more students coming to UVU, but more students are staying at UVU as the breadth of our bachelor degree offerings has expanded,” Holland said. “Last fall, we saw an increase of nearly 1,000 continuing students over the previous year and we anticipate that this trend will continue.”
By surveying the community and working in conjunction with local business leaders, UVU has begun offering degrees customized to the area’s needs. This benefits the more than 85 percent of the student body who remain in Utah post graduation.
“UVU understands its role as a key player in contributing to the economic engine of the state of Utah by providing competent graduates who have practical experience in their specific areas of expertise,” said Michelle Taylor, Associate Vice President of Student Services.
Another component to take into consideration is the newly acquired university status, which is appealing to prospective students.
“Students are excited about the notion of receiving the quality education we’ve been offering for years, yet now under a university moniker and mission,” said Holland.
Enrollment numbers are recorded daily through the third week of the semester when the official head count is reported to the state.
Although the projected enrollment percentage is drastically higher, the size of UVU classrooms will only allow for an estimated three percent increase.
“The fact is, this is a very popular institution that’s got tremendous momentum, and I think that really resonates with people,” said Holland.