Enrollment rises for fall semester

ENROLLMENT: UND student enrollment reaches an all-time high.

This fall, UND experienced its highest first day enrollment ever — 14,863 students.

Even though this year’s total enrollment —  including both undergraduate and graduate students — undergraduate specific enrollment was down slightly from fall 2012. However, the number of students enrolled is expected to increase in the next few weeks.

UND spokesperson Peter Johnson says enrollment should rise to over 15,000 students when the university does another enrollment count at the four week mark. Historically, each year enrollment rises in the first few weeks due to upperclassmen and graduate students enrolling in classes late.

This year, graduate student enrollment is up. Increasing the number of graduate students and building up UND’s research enterprise has been a goal of the university’s for many years.  According to Johnson, increasing graduate studies will create new research such as scientific, scholarly, or creative research which can include music, visual, or theater arts.

Regarding research, Johnson said there are “…more opportunities at UND than other schools of the same size.”  Johnson said he believes that UND’s philosophy is to help students, both graduate and undergraduate, engage in research and this will then benefit them in their careers in the future.

One program that has seen a tremendous increase in students is Petroleum Engineering.  When the program was first started a few years back, there were only four students, but this year, enrollment has increased to 197. The program was created in response to the oil production in the Bakken formation in western North Dakota.

Enrollment has also increased in the Medical School program and the School of Law.

“Overall, we are very pleased with these numbers,” Johnson said “I have talked to President Kelley, and we are looking at the overall quality, not looking just for numbers, and we believe it’s a better environment for incoming students if they’re evenly matched.”

Ashley Marquis is a staff writer for The Dakota Student. She can be reached at [email protected]