Enrollment figures show improved numbers, academics

Washington State University reported a record fall semester enrollment of 23,330 at its four campuses statewide when official 10th day figures were released Tuesday, Sept. 13.

That represents a 0.9 percent increase over last fall’s total. Enrollment increased on three of WSU’s campuses and remained steady on the fourth.

Pullman’s incoming class continued the trend of improving the academic quality of WSU’s new students.

“We are extremely pleased with the size and qualifications of the incoming class of students. At a time when our state needs more well-educated college graduates, these enrollment figures represent good news both for WSU and for the state,” said Vicki McCracken, associate vice president and associate vice provost for enrollment services.

WSU Spokane, including WSU students at the Riverpoint campus and the Intercollegiate College of Nursing, showed the largest increase in head-count enrollment among the WSU campuses, to 1,535 this fall, an increase of 7.6 percent over fall 2004. WSU Vancouver increased 1 percent, to 1,961 students.

WSU Tri-Cities showed the same head-count enrollment in fall 2005 as it did in fall 2004, 1,144 students, although the number of full-time-equivalent students – a measure of how much coursework that enrolled students are taking – increased 4.7 percent on the Tri-Cities campus.

In Pullman, fall enrollment is 18,690, up 81 students or 0.4 percent from fall 2004. That enrollment includes 2,885 first-time freshmen. The university’s enrollment target for first-time freshmen was lower this year than in the previous years to avoid overcrowding; last year’s first-time freshman class totaled 3,108 students.

Solid student retention and the continued impact of the last two large freshman classes resulted in the slight overall enrollment increase in Pullman.

The average high school grade point average of the incoming Pullman freshman is 3.45 with 38.6 percent carrying a high school grade point average of 3.6 or greater. The average SAT score of the new class is 1,109.

Comparable figures for the 2004 freshman class were 3.45 grade point average, 38.2 percent with GPAs of 3.6 and above and a SAT average of 1,072.

Minority students represent 14.9 percent of the 2005 incoming freshman class, compared to 14.5 percent in 2004 and 13.7 percent in 2003. The numbers of Asian-American Pacific Islander and Native American freshmen increased from the 2004 freshman class, while the number of African-American and Hispanic students decreased.

Overall, students of color represent 14.1 percent of total enrollment in Pullman, up from 13.7 percent last year. Enrollment of Asian-American Pacific Islander students saw the most significant increase in the student body as a whole, up 6.5 percent from last year. Pullman’s enrollment also includes 1,120 international students, down slightly from the 1,154 figure of last year.

Pullman’s enrollment is almost equally split between the genders, with 9,348 women and 9,342 men included in the 10th day numbers.

At WSU Spokane, students of color represent 11.9 percent of total enrollment, up from 10.6 percent in fall of 2004. Women make up 69.25 percent of the Spokane student body.

At WSU Vancouver, 62.3 percent of the students are women. Students of color make up 7.2 percent of total enrollment, up from 6.3 percent last fall.

At WSU Tri-Cities, of the students who reported race or ethnicity, 10.5 percent are students of color, up from 9.9 percent last year. Women make up 58.9 percent of the student body at the campus.