CHADRON – Spurred by outreach efforts and recruiting, Chadron State College’s freshman class exceeded projections based on enrollment figures released by the Nebraska State College System Wednesday.
As of Sept. 3, CSC’s freshman class had 412 students, more than five percent higher than the fall of 2020. The 2021 class, which is CSC’s highest freshman class in at least four years, is also among the most diverse classes in school history. More than one out of five incoming freshmen identify as a minority, an increase of nearly 19 percent from 2020’s incoming class.
CSC’s incoming transfer students and graduate students similarly exceeded projections. The number of incoming transfer students is 149, more than 18 percent higher than 2020’s class. The number of graduate students is 132, 10 percent higher than the 2020 cohort.
“We are really pleased with the positive trends for the freshman, transfer, and graduate cohorts,” said Vice President for Enrollment Management Tami Selby. “The size and diversity of our freshman class is encouraging, especially considering since it was trending downward for a few years.”
Although CSC’s full-time equivalent (FTE) number fell from 1,754 in 2020 to 1,741 in 2021, Selby and other college officials are hopeful end of term enrollment numbers could improve.
“Unfortunately, our loss in student FTE is a result of those smaller classes catching up to us. Despite difficult circumstances and our students experiencing uncertainty during the pandemic, our preliminary rates for fall to fall retention continues to remain steady. Our overall retention rate also continues to trend upward,” Selby said. “We feel strongly about our ongoing recruitment efforts and we’re encouraged by the number of students who are interested in enrolling in classes for the second eight weeks of the fall semester.”
In addition to the traditional cohorts, CSC has 24 international students enrolled.
As a system, the NSCS continues to see overall growth in enrollment. As of Sept. 3, the NSCS had an overall increase in FTE of two percent.
—Alex Helmbrecht, Director of College Relations