In keeping with the tradition of the last few semesters, Northwestern State University has continued to increase their enrollment numbers across the board. As of this fall, NSU provides an academic experience for 11,081 students across the United States, up 509 students from the 10,572 students that chose to call Demonland their home last fall.
These large numbers are not to be confused with the number of students who call the Natchitoches campus their home. NSU’s main campus is home to 4,392 students, each of whom either take their classes face-to-face, online, or a combination of the two to complete their degree.
The three categories NSU enrollment saw the most growth in were with preparatory students taking dual-enrollment courses, continuing graduate students, and most importantly, first-time freshmen.
“Seeing our numbers shoot up, especially with first-time freshman, is a reward to the hard work of the whole NSU community,” said Dr. Chris Maggio, university president. “As an administration, we lay out a strategic vision and plan a framework to improve all aspects of the University.”
In addition to including a variety of new academic programs into the university curriculum, NSU has taken major steps to improve the student experience. These steps include renovations to the Freidman Student Union, additions to Iberville Green, construction of the new University bookstore, and inclusion of popular chain restaurants like Chick-Fil-A.
“Two of our most important goals that we as an administration have to facilitate are recruitment and retainment,” said Francis Conine, dean of students. “We have an amazing team here at NSU that focuses on both. The recruitment team spends countless hours during the throughout the year preparing for summer recruitment and facilitating visits from potential students.
“Along with them, the whole of the student body also plays a huge part in retaining students,” added Conine. “The biggest group we look to retain are sophomores and juniors. We’ve seen that one of the most useful tools are simply fellow students contacting their friends to talk about NSU and inviting them back the following year.”
NSU doesn’t hide the fact that it is on a quest to become one of the premier regional universities, and so far, the facts speak for themselves. Being one of the first universities to offer online classes allowed NSU to become leaders in online education, its history as the Louisiana Normal School makes it the premier college for education in this state and many of its programs have achieved national recognition.
With the goal of having 15,000 students in the next five years, and the constant expansion and improvement of the University, Northwestern State University remains dedicated to one goal-yours.