Valley City State University set an all-time record for final Fall semester enrollment by achieving a headcount of 1,384 students, surpassing last year's final headcount of 1,285 by 7.7% and the previous record of 1,369 set over 40 years ago. With this accomplishment, enrollment at VCSU has grown by 40.1% over the past four years.
"VCSU faculty, staff, students, alumni and supporters should all take great pride in this tremendous accomplishment," said VCSU president Dr. Steve Shirley. "This kind of growth can only be achieved with a concerted effort from all corners of the University."
According to Dr. Shirley, VCSU has implemented several key, strategic initiatives that have contributed to this growth. "New and innovative initiatives in the VCSU 2015 Strategic Plan are making significant contributions to the enrollment growth. For example, our online Master of Education, which is only in its seventh year, now serves 157 students, an increase of 6.8% over last year. Emerging undergraduate programs in the Sciences, as well as growing programs in Teacher Education and Fine Arts along with new intercollegiate athletics offerings are all contributing to campus growth. This year, we are continuing to introduce new programs such as a major in Medical Laboratory Science and a concentration in Criminal Justice."
Scholarships also played a pivotal role in achieving this record enrollment. Last year, the level of scholarship commitments reached a new all-time high of over $757,000, largely made possible by outstanding support of alumni and the VCSU community.
The enrollment increase has produced a corresponding increase in population on campus. For example, 347 students are living in residence halls this year, up from the final figure of 326 last year and the most on-campus students at VCSU in over 10 years.
In other signs of increasing momentum, last week VCSU was named the #1 public regional college in the 12-state Midwest region by U.S.News. This is the 14th year in a row VCSU has been recognized by U.S.News, and the first year that VCSU has been recognized with a #1 ranking in its category. Additionally, the campus is preparing to begin construction on the $10.3 million expansion and renovation of the Rhoades Science Center.
Valley City State University (VCSU) prepares people for life through visionary leadership and exemplary practices in teaching, learning and service. VCSU is nationally acclaimed for attracting and retaining talented individuals who advance quality learning opportunities and economic growth through technology and innovation.