SUU Leads State University System in Enrollment Growth

Published: October 07, 2020 | Author: David Bishop | Read Time: 2 minutes

SUU leads Utah universities in enrollment growthSouthern Utah University had the largest year-to-year enrollment growth over any other public university in Utah, according to new data released by the Utah System of Higher Education. Even with the impact of COVID-19, SUU grew 12.1% from week 3 of the Fall 2019 semester to the same time in 2020. SUU also led the state in overall student growth, adding 1,358 students since last fall. SUU has 12,582 students, the largest number in the university’s history.

“What’s amazing is that this fall, in the middle of the COVID pandemic, Southern Utah University is seeing double-digit growth. We believe by the time the fall semester is complete, our actual growth will be closer to 15%,” said SUU President Scott L Wyatt. “Not only are we leading growth in Utah, but we’re probably leading growth among public universities throughout the entire nation. This is exciting news for SUU.”

SUU’s 2020 student population includes:

  • Representation from all 29 Utah counties
  • 9.2% increase of in-state students
  • 20.8% increase of out of state students
  • 16.3% increase for first-time students
  • Growth in the number of minority students

In addition, SUU’s online degree program doubled in size from 2019 to 2020, while the online MBA program increased four-fold.

“We’ve always been aggressive in the way we recruit new students at SUU, and knew this year would be a bigger challenge because of the impact of COVID-19,” said Brandon Wright, SUU’s assistant vice president for enrollment management. “Our success this year is a total team effort from our outstanding faculty, staff and students. It really comes down to the fact that SUU is an incredible student-centered university and our growth is a testament to that.”

Part of the growth effort can also be attributed to having more than 60% of the fall semester’s classes face-to-face, while also giving students who didn’t feel comfortable attending class an online option.

Offering socially-distanced, mask-wearing face-to-face classes brought freshman Nicole Zaccaria to SUU from her hometown of Fredonia, Arizona.

“When I got an email from SUU saying that there would be face-to-face classes I leaped with joy,” said Zaccaria. “My future school and education were going to be achieved. After learning and reading what the requirements were for classes, I felt that SUU was the safest university, and I am so happy I made the choice to come to SUU.”

SUU's enrollment growth for the last five yearsZaccaria is part of a freshman class that is the most qualified in school history. The average grade point average for new freshmen is 3.6 with an average ACT score of 23.9.

For the past five years, SUU has led the growth in the state university system and projections show that trend continuing for the next decade.




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