ST. GEORGE – The Utah System of Higher Education (USHE) announced Tuesday that the System’s record enrollment growth continued for the 2011 Spring Semester as more students are attending Utah’s eight colleges and universities. The same holds true in the case of Dixie State College of Utah as DSC officials announced another semester of system-leading percentage increases in the institution’s 2011 Spring Semester enrollment numbers.
USHE officially released its third week enrollment figures for the spring semester (www.higheredutah.org for complete release), which showed that DSC posted a 7.51% increase in total headcount with 7,944 students, 555 students ahead of last year’s total of 7,389. The 7.51% increase was the third-highest overall gain in the system, behind only Utah Valley University (7.92%) and Utah State University-College of Eastern Utah (7.54%). However, Dixie State led USHE in budget-related headcount percentage growth at 9.57% with 7,738, up 676 students from 7,062 from a year ago.
Dixie State also posted the System’s highest percentage gain in full-time equivalency (FTE*) enrollment this spring at 9.67% with 5,870, a 518 FTE increase from 5,352 student in the spring of 2010, while Dixie’s budget-related FTE saw a system-leading increase of 10.36% with 5,806 students, a 545 student BR-FTE increase compared to 5,261 students this time last year. In addition, Dixie State enjoyed a 22% increase in upper division enrollment with 2,240 total headcount, up 397 students from early 2010.
DSC President Dr. Stephen D. Nadauld and other college officials credit Dixie’s continued enrollment growth to a number of factors, including successful recruiting efforts and the addition of two and four-year degrees. Officials also credit Dixie State’s affordability and low tuition costs, talented and dedicated faculty, and the current economic climate as other key components that have played a role in Dixie’s unprecedented growth.
“Our enrollment growth can be partly contributed to the expansion of additional associate and bachelor degree offerings, our personalized academic instruction and student-centered customer services,” said Frank B. Lojko, DSC Vice President of Student Services. “In addition, it does not hurt to have a wonderful climate and an amazing backdrop of geologic wonders in your backyard, which allows for students to engaged in plethora of outdoor adventures, along with on-campus extracurricular activities and cultural events, which are geared towards better serving our students.”
Overall, student enrollment at the eight Utah public institutions rose 5.30% from the spring 2010 with an increase of 7,842 total students.
Last fall, DSC posted a 10.67% increase in total headcount with 8,755 students, while Dixie’s full-time equivalency (FTE*) figures for the fall semester also rose by 12.53% with 6,267 students, the second-highest percentage increase in USHE. In addition, the College’s Budget Related FTE experienced the highest-percentage increase in USHE at nearly 13% overall with 6,118 students.
Part of Dixie State’s extraordinary enrollment growth is a 5% increase in first-time freshmen with 1,828 students, the largest freshman class in school history, which eclipsed the previous best total of 1,741 students set in 2009. Last fall’s freshman class also included 1,286 new freshmen just out of high school, 55 more student than last year.
In addition, DSC saw a 33% increase in upper division enrollment with 1,970 students, up 488 students from last year, while the institution welcomed 560 new transfer students from other institutions, a 9% rise (512 total transfer students in the fall of 2009) from a year ago. Dixie State also saw a 17% percent bump in minority student enrollment from the year before with a total of 1,017 students.
Established in 1911 and built on the site of the first pioneer encampment in St. George, Dixie State College of Utah strives to help students to define, shape and achieve educational and life goals. Dixie State College is dedicated to providing personalized and excellent teaching in a learning environment where all students can become passionate about their individual educational endeavors.
Dixie State College offers associate degrees and certificate programs, but has also offered a limited number of high demand baccalaureate programs since 2000. DSC now offers a number of baccalaureate programs in core or foundational areas consistent with four-year colleges.
Recently, Dixie State added four-year degrees in mathematics, mathematics education and music education. Students can also earn bachelor’s degrees in accounting, aviation management, biology, business administration, with emphases in accounting, finance and visual technology, as well as clinical laboratory science, communication, computer & information technology, dental hygiene, elementary education, English, integrated studies, music, nursing, psychology and theatre. In addition, DSC offers a secondary education teaching (SET) licensure program in three emphases; biology, English education and integrated science.
Dixie State’s new mission will pave the way to more and more bachelor’s degrees in the coming years. (Please visit the college’s website – www.dixie.edu <http://www.dixie.edu> – for the most updated list of programs.)
*One FTE is defined as any combination of 15 units of credit enrolled in by one or more students. For example, if a student is taking 15 credit hours, that equals one FTE. If 15 students take one credit, that equals one FTE as well.