Poke pride

The Cowboys flag is unfurled over the student section prior to UW’s 2018 game against Wofford at War Memorial Stadium.

The University of Wyoming has enrolled the second-largest freshman class this fall, according to figure released Wednesday concerning “Census Day,” the 15th day of classes that’s the marker for enrollment figures.

Despite being the second largest class, this year’s class has 89 fewer students than the record-breaking class of 1,849 that came to the university in the fall of 2018. This year’s figure is a nearly 12% increase from fall 2014.

According to Wednesday’s figures, the number of people receiving degrees and certificates from UW in the 2018-19 academic year topped 3,000 for the first time. The 3,031 total degrees included 2,228 bachelor’s degrees, also a new record, and an increase of more than 100 from the year before, according to the university.

“Our focus is not only on recruiting more students to attend the university, but also on helping them succeed and receive their degrees,” Kyle Moore, UW’s associate vice provost for enrollment management, said in a press release. “The numbers we’re seeing in enrollment and graduation illustrate our positive trajectory and energize us for the additional work to be done.”

However, record numbers of graduates means that UW’s overall enrollment actually declined this year after two years of growth. According to census data collected on the 15th day of classes, 12,249 undergraduate and graduate students are enrolled at the university, compared to 12,450 last fall.

The 15th class day is used as the university’s official enrollment figure because it follows both the class drop/add deadlines and the first due date for tuition and fee payments.

While the number of students who enrolled at UW this year is fewer than 2018, there were actually more first-time students who were admitted to to the university. There were 5,133 first-time students admitted this year, up from 5,084 the year before.

As with 2018, there were slightly more out-of-state students who enrolled this year than in-state students.

The academic performance of this year’s class is essentially on par with the class that came in in 2018. The average high school grade-point average for new freshmen rose slightly from 3.50 last year to 3.52 this year. The average ACT score is 24.7, compared to 24.8 last year.

Enrollment trends for minority students continue to tick upward. Minority student now compose 12.7% of UW’s student population, compared with 11.7% five years ago. Compared to last fall, enrollment of American Indian students has increased by 10.6% and black student enrollment increased by 9.3%.

(3) comments


Another title: Freshman class size down from last year.


While true, it isn't totally fair to characterize it as a "decline". The 2nd-largest-ever freshman class, immediately following the largest is a healthy statistic. Those students are at UW for more than one year. As long as retention rates don't drop downward significantly, this freshman class still translates to a meaningful growth in enrollment.

That doesn't mean that UW, its administration nor Wyoming lawmakers ought to point and jump and shout in glee about how great and successful UW is because of this number. It doesn't mean growth will be sustained in subsequent years, nor does it mean that UW, the administration and Wyoming lawmakers can't still royally mess things up in ways that damage enrollment, like continually and repeatedly and relatively dramatically hike tuition and mandatory fees (4%+) every single year, or become more strict and rigid about requiring students to live on campus (New dorm project).

But for now, this is still a good number.


Hmm. This information indicates that the existing dorms are not a deterrent to student enrollment and graduation. Good to know this now before hundreds of millions of dollars are spent for no good reason.

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