One hundred and eleven students.
That is the difference in the number of students from Fall 2012 to Fall 2013. Fall 2013 saw a .99 percent increase in enrollment from Fall 2012.
Fred Dietz, executive director of Enrollment Management, said enrollment for the fall semester is 10,943, which is the highest ever for the University.
“This is quite an accomplishment and is a reflection of everyone’s work on campus,” Dietz said. “To increase enrollment requires the work of faculty, students and staff and that clearly was the case this past year. The Murray State family is always supportive of enrollment efforts.”
He said the recruitment and retention of students takes the entire University community.
“I believe our students realize after visiting our campus that Murray State has a valuable package to offer,” Dietz said. “We offer an affordable price for an outstanding education and the ideal student life experience. The growth we experienced this year is something to celebrate.”
Last year, Murray State saw record-breaking numbers for the freshman class.
Overall enrollment increased by 2 percent and the total number of students was 10,832.
“Our increase is a reflection of our high quality academic programs, strong financial aid offerings and affordable tuition, room and board rates,” Dietz said. “Murray State continues to be one of the best buys and families recognize that when choosing to go here.”
Last year, the University was at its highest enrollment ever, with the largest freshman class in school history.
Fall 2012 enrollment showed a 6.5 percent growth in freshmen and an 18 percent increase in international students.
Interim President Tim Miller said increasing funding from the state is based on different metrics on how well the University performs in enrollment, retention and graduation rates.
“We welcome larger classes,” Miller said. “We need to make sure we do a great job retaining students and getting them graduated in a reasonable amount of time without a lot of debt.”
Miller said the University only has enough facilities to maintain about 12,000 students.
“We need facilities for them to stay in and plenty of food for them to eat,” Miller said. “Once we get to the point (of 12,000 students) it’s going to take a lot of planning to build additional dorms, add more faculty, teach more classes, provide more services. It’s going to cost more to have more students.”
Miller said Murray State has the second lowest tuition in the state and he wants to keep it that way.
He said he is pleased to have a record enrollment of students this year.
“Our challenge and obligation is to retain these students as they progress toward graduation, provide them with outstanding educational opportunities and ensure that they are prepared to enter the job market and become productive citizens,” Miller said.
Since 2008, the University has continued to see a progressive growth in student enrollment.
While the final enrollment number is released, the breakdown of students by classification and other demographics is not yet available.
Don Robertson, vice president of Student Affairs, said he thinks the University has another large freshman class.
“This is the second largest freshman class at Murray State,” Robertson said. “Enrollment is up overall compared to last year. Any increase is good.”
Story by Meghann Anderson, News Editor