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The fall 2013 official enrollment figures are based on the 20th day of classes, the State of Missouri’s official enrollment census date.
Institutions such as Missouri State University, Missouri Southern State University, Evangel University, and the College of the Ozarks saw a rise in students compared to last fall.
MSU enrolled 21,798 students, up 739 students from last year. MSSU in Joplin saw a 3.7 percent increase with 5,616 students for the fall. Evangel University in Springfield is up roughly 10 percent with 2,272 students, according to Paul Logsdon, director of Public Relations and Publications. In Point Lookout, College of the Ozarks enrolled 1,500 students to campus up by roughly 200 students.
Donald Simpson, vice president for Enrollment Management and Services at MSU, said the university has done a number of things including new initiatives using social media and high school visits to make recruitment more effective, but there are other factors.
“The reason that students choose an institution is less because of recruitment and more because of what the institution has to offer in terms of programs, facilities, activities, and so forth. I would credit our growth this year just to the fact students liked what they saw when they came to visit and wanted to be here,” Simpson said.
While there have been notable increases throughout the state, some Springfield colleges have seen a decline in enrollment this fall.
Ozarks Technical Community College came in with 14,798, down just two percent from last year, and Drury University’s current enrollment numbers are at 4,649, down from 5,228 last year.
Mark Miller is the associate director of marketing and communications at the school. He said a decline in Missouri high school graduates may be an explanation for the decline in Drury’s enrollment, since the university receives about 75 percent of its students from Missouri.
For KSMU News, I’m Briana Simmons.