Ball State, ISU Set Enrollment Records
MUNCIE and TERRE HAUTE -
Two Indiana colleges are reporting record enrollment for the 2017-2018 academic year. Ball State University and Indiana State University say growing freshman classes played a large part in all-time highs.
Ball State's total enrollment is 22,513, which is the highest total in its nearly 100-year history. The school says it also set records for underrepresented populations and out-of-state students. The freshman class, at 4,002, is just three students shy of the record set in 1997.
Ball State President Geoffrey Mearns says the strong enrollment numbers show "our focus on academic innovation has found a ready audience." He credits the school's academic programs, faculty and support from the state, including $87.5 million in funding for a new science building.
Indiana State's enrollment count is 13,771, marking a 1.5 percent increase over last year's enrollment. The freshman class is 2,688, which is a nearly 10 percent increase over last year. The university says that is due in large part to a 66 percent increase in students from Illinois.
President Dan Bradley says he's also happy to see improvements in GPA and standardized test scores of incoming students, saying it shows that "high-performing students choose State as the place to prepare them for their careers." Bradley is set to retire in January after nine years leading Indiana State University.