GARY | Indiana University Northwest announced that student enrollment for fall 2013 stands at 6,387 students, an all-time high and a 3.3 percent increase over last year’s fall enrollment of 6,184 students. This year marks IU Northwest’s sixth consecutive year of increased enrollment.
IU Northwest is among four IU campuses that welcomed a record number of students this fall, which contributed to the historic university-wide enrollment of 107,132 students.
“Our fall enrollment of more than 6,300 students demonstrates that our campus continues to provide the high-quality, affordable education to which Indiana University is committed and is a strong example of the vitality and critical role of IU’s regional campuses,” IU Northwest Chancellor William J. Lowe said.
The Northwest campus attributes the increase in students to the campus’s strong and strategic recruitment efforts, aimed at academic honor, transfer students and adult learners, as well as the campus’s continued commitment to retention initiatives.
The number of incoming students who earned Indiana Academic Honors diplomas has increased by 43 percent, when compared to similar figures last year.
“We are proud to be the choice for Northwest Indiana students who are well-prepared to begin their world-class IU education,” Lowe said. “The campus’s focus to provide students with academic resources, matched with these students’ persistence and work ethic, will, in the end, result in a better, stronger, more educated community.”
The 2013 enrollment numbers also indicate a 6 percent increase in the number of undergraduate transfer students, when compared to last year’s fall enrollment.
Increases in the number of juniors and seniors, 2 percent and 3 percent, respectively, also provide valuable insight and strong indication of the campus’s redoubled efforts to support students through to degree completion.
Student completion and persistence initiatives that have aided retention include innovations such as an early warning system providing students with valuable feedback at critical points in their coursework, implementation of a Course Commitment Policy, and the formation of an Enrollment Management Group tasked to create and implement resources and activities that support new student enrollment, persistence and graduation.
“At IU Northwest, we firmly believe that every student matters,” Lowe said. “From the full-time student to the adult learner with many obligations, my campus colleagues and I take each student’s academic success and progress to graduation as a personal commitment.”
Credit hours at IU Northwest are up 1.67 percent, at 62,556, according to the official report released by Indiana University. This marks the fourth consecutive year in which registered credit hours topped 61,000 at IU’s Northwest campus.
IU Northwest had prepared for expected enrollment increases through recent campus investments, including expanded online course offerings.
Ninety-one online courses in 16 disciplines are offered this semester, an 18 percent increase in course offerings as compared to one year ago. Additional online courses are planned for the coming semester.
“Our commitment to online learning at IU Northwest is an investment in making an Indiana University education accessible for the citizens of Northwest Indiana, through an innovative and convenient option that allows students to complete their degrees in a timely manner that suits their busy lives,” Lowe said.
The Indiana State Budget Committee’s approval in July to proceed with construction of a 106,000-square-foot, $45 million facility to replace Tamarack Hall is also a significant campus milestone.
The building, to be located on the east side of Broadway at 35th Avenue, will serve both IU Northwest and Ivy Tech Community College Northwest.
“This building symbolizes IU Northwest’s and Ivy Tech’s commitment to and investment in student academic success,” Lowe said.
An additional legislative advance for IU Northwest includes the receipt of funds earmarked for campus renovation and repairs. Projects, currently in progress or scheduled to start in the near feature, include the renovation of campus restrooms in Hawthorn Hall; HVAC upgrades in Raintree Hall; sewer system construction; and the construction renovation of the former Child Care Center into office space.
IU Northwest reserves were used for the renovation of the RedHawk Cafeteria, which opened on the first day of the fall semester. Complete with a larger grill and refrigerator, the cafeteria has a better design flow and provides students with additional food options.
The Modern Languages Lab, located in Hawthorn Hall, was recently renovated providing students with the ability to immerse themselves in foreign languages and cultures to enhance their international studies. The renovated lab, named and dedicated for the late Frank Caucci, Ph.D., was made possible through a generous gift to the IU Northwest campus by Caucci’s daughter, Emmanuelle, his son, Matthew, the Caucci family, and his life partner, Brian A. Bates, J.D.
Discussions regarding the design of the campus green space, left following the demolition of Tamarack Hall, are in progress.
This year’s enrollment and credit-hour numbers, referred to as census results, constitute IU’s official figures for 2013-14. Census counts are made one week after the start of classes, allowing for changes resulting from late registration.