All three state-supported universities saw an increase in their freshmen classes, but the University of Iowa was the only school to see an overall increase in fall enrollment. University of Iowa provost Michael Hogan says fall enrollment hit 29,979, up 340 students over last year overall and he says the freshman class was 4,289. That’s 440 more than last year and an all-time record.

Hogan says a variety of factors, such as recruiting, helped the U-of-I bring in such a big class. And he says the price is right compared to other Midwestern schools. Compared to Illinois, Wisconsin and other Big Ten schools, the cost of going to Iowa is “still really a bargain,” according to Hogan.
Hogan says he doesn’t want to make light of the burden of paying for college, but he says Iowa — compared to other schools — is relatively inexpensive.

Iowa State University saw freshman enrollment go up about six percent over last fall. Marc Harding, ISU’s director of admissions and enrollment, says there are a variety of reasons for that. He says they have a new scholarship program for kids from out-of-state who have parents and grandparents who went to Iowa State. Harding says the new criminal justice program and admissions partnership programs have helped attract students.

Harding says while ISU made “significant gains” in new student enrollment, overall enrollment was 25,462, which is down 279 students from last year. Harding says the minority enrollment hit 8.5 percent. Iowa is a state with a 6.1 percent minority population, so hitting the Regents goal of 8.5 percent required an extra effort according to Harding.

University of Northern Iowa registrar Philip Patton says the picture in Cedar Falls is similar to Ames. UNI had their second year with an increase in freshmen enrollment, with a slight decrease in overall enrollment. Patton says an increase in the graduating class and a decrease in past freshmen classes led to the overall decline this year, but Patton says they look to be on an upward enrollment trend in the future.

Patton says all three state schools are benefiting from more Iowa kids going to college. Patton says there’s a pretty good-sized Iowa senior class, making a larger pool to recruit students from. Plus he says more students are chosing to go to college after high school.

The overall fall enrollment at UNI is 12,260.