SOU Sets Another Enrollment Record

RCC Transfers, Californians and Hispanic Students Lead Growth

(Ashland, Ore.) –Southern Oregon University is experiencing the largest and most diverse fall enrollment in its history. Headcount has reached 6,744, a 4.7 percent increase over last fall’s figure that was up a dramatic 26 percent over fall 2009. The categories showing the strongest growth were transfers – especially from Rogue Community College, Hispanic students, Californians and international students.

”In today’s economy, students are searching for value and that’s exactly what SOU offers,” says SOU President Mary Cullinan. “As the public liberal arts university of the West, SOU provides a private school level of personal attention and engagement at a public school price. SOU also prepares graduates for the jobs of tomorrow. New programs in Emerging Media and Digital Arts, Environmental Studies, Outdoor Adventure Leadership, and Applied Science set SOU apart from other choices in higher education.”

The following are highlights from fall term 2010 enrollment figures:

  • Headcount is 6,744, a 4.7 percent increase over fall 2010, and the highest enrollment for any term in the university’s history.
  • Full-time Equivalent (FTE) enrollment is 4,678, 3.4 percent more than fall 2010, and also an all-time record.
  • Hispanic enrollment saw a dramatic increase, up 25.7 percent this fall, helping to raise minority student enrollment to 13.9 percent. This is the most diverse fall term in SOU history.
  • Fall 2011 represents SOU’s largest new transfer class ever – 829 students, an increase of 12.2 percent over fall 2010.
  • Fall 2011 represents the largest group of transfer students from Rogue Community College ever, an increase of 44.5% over Fall 2010.
  • California student enrollment is up 15.2 percent over last fall, the largest number of California students in institutional history. Total non-resident enrollment is up 6.3 percent.
  • Housing is filled to capacity this fall.
  • International student enrollment increased 17.4 percent from fall 2010. Students from 22 countries now attend SOU, including Belarus and Malaysia.

Looking ahead, applications for fall 2012 are already well ahead of this time last year. The university’s leaders have begun conversations about the direction and nature of future growth, maintaining and increasing the quality of instruction and enhancing campus life.
On the drawing boards are a new 700-bed student residential village to replace the aging Cascades Housing and Dining Complex. Ground breaking is planned for next spring and opening is anticipated in fall 2013. An honors college within the university is also in development, with the first class of 25 expected to enroll in fall 2013.

“This is an exciting time for SOU,” says President Cullinan. “We will celebrate SOU’s 140th anniversary in 2012. We always face challenges, but we have a strong leadership team, dedicated faculty and staff, and talented, engaged students. SOU brings tremendous value to our students, our region, and the state of Oregon.”

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