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Increased undergraduate student retention is key to record enrollment at The University of Texas at Austin

Enrollment at The University of Texas at Austin reached a record-setting total of 50,613 this fall, primarily because of increases in the retention of undergraduate students.

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AUSTIN, Texas—Enrollment at The University of Texas at Austin reached a record-setting total of 50,613 this fall, primarily because of increases in the retention of undergraduate students.

This year’s enrollment represents a .7 percent increase over the previous record enrollment of 50,245, set in fall 1989. Fall enrollment last year was 49,996. Based on preliminary enrollment figures, The University of Texas at Austin is the largest single-campus institution in the nation.

This fall’s enrollment includes 38,615 undergraduate, 10,561 graduate and 1,437 law students.

Because of the increased retention rates, undergraduate continuing student counts grew from 27,148 in fall 2000 to 27,850 this fall. There also were increases in undergraduate returning former students (from 1,230 in fall 2000 to 1,352 this fall), and graduate continuing students (from 7,142 to 7,327). As anticipated, there were declines in the number of first-time freshmen (down by 349 to 7,337) and transfer students (down by 22 to 2,076). These decreases were in accordance with enrollment management policies.

"We are making good progress in our goal of retaining undergraduate students at increasing rates," said Larry R. Faulkner, president of The University of Texas at Austin. "The first year retention rate for the 2000 freshman class is 92 percent, a significant improvement over last fall’s retention rate of 90.3 percent. However, we must continue to provide a high quality undergraduate experience for our students by managing our enrollments and enhancing our faculty and facility resources."

University-wide enrollment increased for the following racial/ethnic groups: African American, to 1,606 (from 1,582 in fall 2000); Asian American, 6,700 (6,236); Hispanic, 6,088 (5,920). Enrollment decreased for white students to 31,049 (from 31,368) and American Indian students to 203 (229).

The number of entering Hispanic freshmen increased to 1,024 (up 13 students or 1.3 percent), American Indian to 34 (up 2 or 6.3 percent), and Asian American to 1,413 (up 88 or 6.6 percent), while the number of white freshmen dropped to 4,447 (down 354 or 7.4 percent), African American to 242 (down 54 or 18.2 percent), and foreign students to 139 (down 78 or 35.9 percent). The total number of entering freshmen is 7,337, a 4.5 percent decrease from last year’s figure.

The number of entering freshmen in the top 10 percent of their high school graduating class this fall is 50.5 percent, somewhat higher than last year’s figure of 46.9 percent.

New graduate student enrollment was slightly lower this fall at 3,050, a decrease of about 1.3 percent. Hispanic student enrollment increased to 206 (up 16 or 8.4 percent), while the number of entering African American graduate students decreased to 54 (down by 22 students or 28.9 percent) and Asian American enrollment dropped to 150 (down 17 or 10.2 percent). This fall’s entering law class enrolled one more African American student than in fall 2000 (up to 18 students), and eight more Asian American students (up to 32 students).

These data are preliminary 12th class day numbers issued by the Office of Institutional Studies. Final figures for the 12th class day will be available in October. There usually is little variation from the preliminary figures.

* Entering freshmen and graduate students include those students who first enrolled in the summer and are continuing in the fall, as well as new fall entrants.