For the first time in nearly a decade, Nicholls’ Fall semester enrollment numbers are at its highest total due to record-breaking retention rates and increase in online students, as detailed in a press release from the university.
The 2020 Nicholls’ Fall semester reportedly enrolled an impressively high 6,780 students according to the traditional class size statistic taken on the fourteenth day of classes. This enrollment number is the largest since 2011, and the year-to-year increase of 4 percent is the largest since 1990.
This statistic comes as a third consecutive year of record-breaking retention rates since this Fall semester saw 74.4 percent of first-time freshmen returning for their sophomore year. Compare this to the national average of 61 percent,and you’ll quickly see that the accolades received by Nicholls State University have been awarded dozens of times over.
Nicholls Online, the University’s online degree program that allows students to complete a degree from start to finish in an accelerated 8 week format, saw an increase of 15.7 percent in its Fall 2020 enrollment. This is partially due to the recent national pandemic, but it’s also a tribute to the program’s recent years of success, as it’s recently been expanded in the past few years, and it continues to be praised for its quality and affordability.
Overall, the enrollment record is seen as a monumental testament to the high quality of education one can attain at Nicholls State University, especially since this increase is so substantial during a time of national pandemic. The University’s Executive Vice President for Advancement and Enrollment Services, Dr. Alex Arceneax commented on the achievement in the University’s press release by stating, “even during these unprecedented, challenging times, we received an overwhelming message from our student body and the Bayou Region; they want to be at Nicholls State University.”
He went on to add that he feels that the trusts the faculty “to provide the Nicholls Experience – top-notch academics and the best student experience in the state – in a safe way. We have amazing recruiters, faculty and staff who give it their all to provide the very best for our students.”
In addition to the Nicholls’ fall semester enrollment increase, Nicholls’ top degree programs were reported with its Nursing program and Health undergraduate department seeing the largest numbers. As of the 14th day of the Fall 2020 semester, the programs’ numbers are:
- Nursing Program: 921 students enrolled.
- Business Administration and Computer Information Systems” 733 students enrolled.
- Allied health with 512 students enrolled.
- Biological sciences with 486 students enrolled.
- Teacher education with 436 students enrolled.
In addition to this, Allied Health saw one of the largest increases in its program size when compared to other undergraduate departments, as its increase was an 18 percent growth from last year, second only to Chemistry and Physical Sciences’ 24 percent growth. Other undergraduate programs receiving recognition for their department’s growth are Social Science’s 19 percent increase and Art’s 11 percent increase.
For any interested parties, the Institutional Research Department at Nicholls annually releases its enrollment statisticsvia the University’s Office Of Institutional Research, Effectiveness, and Planning (IREP). The Director of Enrollment Services, Courtney Cassard evaluated the high retention rates, attributing it to the students being better prepared for the challenges that come with successfully passing that first year.
When interviewed by The Nicholls Worth, the school’s independent news organization, she reportedly stated, “It’s a team effort with faculty and staff, in order to progress you through your degree. So, that was a big attributing factor to the increase.”
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