FLORENCE - The University of North Alabama appears to be in line for record enrollment for the Fall 2020 semester, university officials said.
Official enrollment figures will come out on Oct. 30, but UNA, which had more than 8,000 students in Fall 2019, is expected to increase that by some 4 percent.
UNA President Ken Kitts said this particularly is impressive amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Like many other colleges and universities, UNA was also affected by the pandemic, but, unlike many of those other institutions, this university is seeing an increase in enrollment among most of its student populations, including our online and graduate students,” Kitts said. “This year’s success is a credit to the hard work among those on this campus, especially Admissions Director Julie Taylor and her team, along with many others.”
The freshman cohort is slightly smaller this fall, while transfer enrollment is flat, according to a university release. Many international students transitioned successfully to the online environment when pandemic conditions prevented them from traveling to campus earlier this year. The expectation is that international students will return to UNA once travel conditions improve. Thanks to partnerships with universities in China and India, online enrollment among international students is growing.
“Our enrollment growth this fall really is the product of a diversified and intentional ‘smart growth’ strategy that we have employed for some time now,” said Ross Alexander, provost and executive vice president. “As the UNA brand continues to resonate with a diverse and growing constituency of learners, we are seeing that translate into an increased interest and subsequent enrollment at UNA for learners at all levels – local, regional, national, and international.”
Alexander said enrollment growth this fall was spread across all of the academic colleges, with the College of Business and the Anderson College of Nursing and Health Professions experiencing the greatest gains.
“Our College of Business will boast over 1,200 online graduate students this fall, which includes our MBA and our Master of Accountancy program,” he said. “We continue to see growth trends among our online and graduate student populations, and now UNA’s student body is approximately 30 percent graduate students and 30 percent online students.”