SEMO fall enrollment numbers soar - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

SEMO fall enrollment numbers soar

(Source: KFVS) (Source: KFVS)
(KFVS) -

With the highest retention rate in the school's history, and a flourishing beginning freshman class, Southeast Missouri State University begins the fall 2016 semester in robust fashion.

Total enrollment at Southeast Missouri University stands at 11,536 today, a 1.1 percent increase from this time last year. Preliminary figures indicate SEMO will have its highest retention rate in recent history with 74.3 percent of its new students from last fall returning for the fall 2016 semester.

Director of Admissions Lenell Hahn said the the number of students from Illinois has increased by 50 percent. The number of students from the St. Louis area also increased by 22 percent.

"Forty percent of our incoming beginning freshman class traditionally comes from the St. Louis area," Hahn said. "That is an area that we've seen significant growth this year and a lot of our marketing dollars were targeted towards the St. Louis area and over in Illinois as well."

Hahn said in the future, the university plans to continue to find ways to let people know what SEMO has to offer.

With a record retention rate this fall, SEMO also is bolstered by a 10.6 percent increase in beginning freshmen. There is a nine percent enrollment growth among Missouri students along with an 11 percent increase among new students from Cape Girardeau County. The total beginning freshman enrollment has grown to 1,875 this fall, up from 1,695 at this time last year.

Southern Illinois University hasn't released any official numbers as of yet, but have released predicted enrollment numbers.

And the projection isn't as great as SEMO's.

Because of the uncertainty created by the Illinois legislature, enrollment is expected to decline.

The university is even expected to close three floors of Schneider Hall to adjust for fewer students.

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