LARAMIE, Wyoming — The University of Wyoming has enrolled 12,627 students for the spring semester, an increase of 162 from a year ago, according to the UW Office of Student Affairs.
The increase in spring enrollment follows a 105-student increase in fall enrollment. While spring enrollment numbers are generally lower than those in the fall, the fall-to-spring retention rate increased from 90.2 to 92.1 percent.
"We are always excited when we see an increase," said Director of Admissions Shelley Dodd. "We have so many faculty, staff and administrators working hard with all things related to enrollment. We're continuing to make sure the University of Wyoming is on the minds of students during their college search process, whether that be through publications, emails, calls, travel or whatever it might be."
The UW College of Engineering and Applied Science is a big part of the university's successes in enrollment.
The college saw a 9.2 percent enrollment increase from last spring, or a difference of 152 students.
Michael Pishko, UW's dean of the College of Engineering and Applied Science, said the college's enrollment increase is reflective of a high demand for engineers, regardless of the field.
"Engineering is in demand over a number of industries, whether we're talking about Wyoming with energy or natural resources, or the northeast for pharmaceuticals," Pishko told the Laramie Boomerang (http://bit.ly/1wJwMJu). "There's a whole generation of engineers that are retiring and so a lot of companies are essentially re-tooling."
Graduate students are also coming to Laramie in increasing numbers, with 163 additional graduate and professional students enrolled at UW this Spring, making for a 5.6 percent increase.
Sara Axelson, UW's vice president for student affairs, said several initiatives undertaken by her office seem to be paying off. The STEP tutoring program, for example, is showing promising signs.
"We were really pleased to see the growth in graduate students in this report," Axelson said. "The other piece is the continual growth and our freshman fall-to-spring retention. I really believe it's a direct correlation to the efforts we have going on with our STEP retention and tutoring programs."
If two consecutive semesters with positive enrollment figures wasn't enough, the trend seems to be continuing, Axelson said.
"Our projections for fall are so strong," she said. "We'll go into more depth with that at the March board of trustees meeting, but the admissions number for new freshmen and transfers have increased substantially."
Information from: Laramie Boomerang, http://www.laramieboomerang.com