Kent campus enrollment up, regional enrollment down

Hanna Moore

Kent State’s enrollment statistics were released Tuesday and this year’s incoming freshman class is the third largest and most academically diverse.

“A little smaller than last year, but very much in line with what we want to achieve,” said Kent State President Beverly Warren at Monday’s Faculty Senate meeting. “As your president, I’m not so much into how large we are, but about the quality of what we offer and about the quality of the individuals who come share time with us, so I’m very pleased with the enrollment.”

The retention rate is also the highest ever, with Kent State being in the 80-percentile range for the first time ever, said T. David Garcia, associate vice president for enrollment management . 

“If you recruit better students, you are going to retain those students,” Garcia said. “I’m not saying it’s automatic. It does not just happen. It takes the hard work of faculty and staff working with these students to retain them to their sophomore year.”

However, enrollment and retention have declined at all regional campuses except Geauga, Garcia said.

“I think we’re seeing a national trend here, and it’s not just Kent State regional campuses only, but as the economy improves, we tend to see a downward trend at the two-year colleges, and that would include our two-year regional campuses,” Garcia said.

Online enrollment is up for both 100 percent online programs and “hybrid programs,” in which students are enrolled in the majority of their classes on campus and one or two online courses. 

The largest increase in retention is nursing, which Garcia said jumped about 10 percent.

The other colleges increased in retention about 3-6 percent, Garcia said. 

Contact Hanna Moore at [email protected].