UW Fall Enrollment Hits New High

October 8, 2012
Aerial view of students standing in the shape of letters U and W
Members of the University of Wyoming’s 2012 freshman class pose for a photo in Prexy’s Pasture. The freshman class of 1,584 has helped UW hit a new start-of-semester enrollment record of 13,122. (UW Photo)

Fall enrollment at the University of Wyoming has exceeded 13,000 students and should approach 14,000 by the end of the semester, UW officials say.

It’s the highest start-of-semester enrollment in UW’s history.

UW census data collected on the 15th class day shows 13,122 students enrolled, an increase of 202 students from the 2011 fall semester. The 15th class day is used because it falls after the class drop/add deadlines, and after the first tuition and fee payment is due. The previous record 15th-day enrollment was 12,992 in 2010.

After all UW Outreach School enrollments are recorded, fall semester enrollment should be nearly 14,000, says Sara Axelson, UW’s vice president for student affairs. Last fall’s end-of-semester enrollment total was a record 13,992.

“We’re delighted to see a continuation of our historically high student enrollment and are especially pleased with an increase in freshman-to-sophomore retention,” Axelson says. “Students from Wyoming, other states and abroad are recognizing the outstanding academic programs we offer at a relatively low cost, and the many ways to learn and become engaged in the university community.”

UW’s fall 2012 enrollment is boosted by a new freshman class of 1,584, an increase of 50 students from fall 2011. That includes 843 Wyoming residents -- a number holding relatively steady in spite of a decline in Wyoming high school graduates -- and 741 nonresidents, a 9.8 percent increase from last year.

Among nonresident freshmen, the number of students from Colorado rose to 383, a 10.7 percent increase from 2011. Increased numbers of first-year students also are being seen from California, Nebraska, Washington, Montana and Illinois.

For the fifth consecutive year, UW’s international student enrollment has increased, up 4.6 percent to 789 students. The students come from more than 90 countries.

Other highlights from the fall 2012 enrollment report:

  • Freshman-to-sophomore retention increased by 3 percent to 76 percent.
  • The ethnic minority population attending UW increased by 42 students to 1,267, or 9.7 percent of the student population.
  • Wyoming residents comprise 70.9 percent of the UW student population.


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