Freshmen enrollment numbers continue to rise
Published: Wednesday, April 4, 2012
Updated: Wednesday, April 4, 2012 10:04
The freshmen enrollment numbers at Dixie State College are on the rise.
The admissions office has received 4,300 applications for the fall semester enrollment so far. With that amount, there is a 13 percent increase of freshmen applicants from last year. DSC is constantly growing in size.
Enrollment increased by about 25 percent, which was stressing to provide enough teachers and classrooms three falls ago, President Stephen Nadauld said. Since then, the college has grown by about 8 percent per year.
“If our overall enrollment growth is somewhere between 5-10 percent that will be just right,” Nadauld said. “We will be tickled with that, and it’s a number we can manage.”
The increasing amount of freshmen doesn’t just mean an increase of people around campus. It is a sign of things to come.
“We are growing up,” Dean of Students Del Beatty said. “Becoming bigger and having a larger student body has a lot of great pros to it.”
It will enhance the four-year programs, help DSC become a university, and influence master’s programs, he said with excitement.
“Our rapid recent growth has signaled to the regents that we are a viable and exciting university-type place to be,” Nadauld said.
Yes, there are changes going on, but what is the source of the increased interest in DSC? The answer: what the school has to offer.
“Our recruiters are awesome; the message we are taking is appealing to students.” Beatty said. “We are the most affordable four-year program in Utah.”
With the American economic recession, students are taking cost into account when picking potential schools to attend.
“As students compare in other states, as well as in Utah, our value proposition is increasingly attractive,” Nadauld said. “We are having percentage increases in our regional applications from places like California, Nevada, Arizona and Idaho.”
DSC is still seen as a two-year school, but every year four-year degrees are added.
“The four-year degrees are getting traction, and the opportunity to stay for four full years instead of leaving after one or two is appealing to many students,” Nadauld said.
Another reason why people come to DSC is because of its geographical location.
“For people who like to be outside this place is a dream,” Beatty said. “Go outside today. The other schools are going to have snow for months.”
With an increased student body there is the puzzle of where to put them.
Administrators will have to identify adjunct instructors they can call on to teach courses if needed. This may not be beneficial to students.
“I would definitely prefer to have teachers who have been around awhile,” said Slade Walker, a sophomore biology major from Santa Clara. “They have a groove to their teaching which you don’t get from new teachers.”
Administrators will also have to create more classrooms, which the Jeffrey R. Holland Centennial Commons building will help with; increase the number of online courses available; and expand the available housing choices, Nadauld said.
The exact number of the increased percentage of freshmen will not be known until later this year, said David Roos, executive director of enrollment services.