Enrollment is down about two percent at Illinois State University at the beginning of this school year. It is the second straight decline for ISU. But, Troy Johnson, the new Vice President for Enrollment Management says that's less than the drop for many in state institutions. And Johnson says there are certainly bright signs compared to major out of state competitors.
SIU is in much worse shape with a six percent enrollment decline and five straight years of drops. Johnson says ISU freshment have higher academic qualifications.The average ACT score for the freshman class rose to 24 from 23.7 last year and the average high school GPA rose to 3.41 from 3.37 last year. Johnson emphasizes ISU is bucking the statewide trend in public universities in which the average ACT score fell substantially for entering freshmen.The student body also is more diverse. Johnson says students from underrepresented groups grre 3.5% this year. On campus enrollment slipped below 20,000. ISU is also reporting the numbers in a new way to include off campus students, a fairly common methodology. With that included, ISU graduate and undergraduate enrollment this fall is 20,272. The school's freshman class has 2,981 students. That's 3.5 percent fewer freshmen students than last year's incoming freshman class of 3,088 students.
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