KALAMAZOO—The official fall census of the Western Michigan University student body puts the total enrollment tally for the 2012-13 academic year at 24,598.
The census reflects a sharp increase in the number of students studying in online courses. The report also reflects an increase in students studying at regional locations, a boom in the number of international students, significant increases in the number of minority students, a continuation in the explosive growth of WMU's Lee Honors College and a slight increase in the number of graduate students.
The census also details a decrease in the overall number of undergraduate students on the University's main campus. That shift led to an overall 1.9 percent decrease in total enrollment compared with last fall's total of 25,086. The percentage decrease was slightly lower than the number predicted earlier this year by University officials.
"Our students are more diverse, this fall, in the very broadest sense of the term," says WMU President John M. Dunn. "Our strategic efforts have resulted in healthy increases in national and global representation. And we're seeing new enrollment trends reflected in the number of students studying at our regional centers and opting for online courses."
Notable fall census numbers
- A beginning freshman class of nearly 3,200
- A 4.2 percent increase in the number of African-American students and a 3.4 percent increase overall in the number of minority students
- A nearly 13 percent increase in the in the number of international students, with significant increases in the number of students from Japan (up 78 percent), China (up 35 percent) and Saudi Arabia (up 21 percent)
- A 44.7 percent increase in the number of students enrolled in online courses
- A 3.6 percent increase in enrollment at WMU's regional locations around the state
- An enrollment jump at the Lee Honors College to more than 1,600 students, which is a better than 60 percent enrollment increase over the past five years