September 14, 2012 | 10:31 a.m.
By Suzanne McInroy, Director of Communications
Community Life Center on the campus of Bethel University.
Bethel University’s College of Arts & Sciences has 2,793 students enrolled for fall semester, a number similar to enrollment in 2010. “I'm pleased that Bethel’s enrollment has remained near the 2,800 mark for the eighth year in a row,” says Dan Nelson, vice president for admissions, financial aid, and retention. “This has happened despite a downturn in the number of high school graduates since 2008 and a sluggish economy,” Nelson adds.
The total new students for the fall semester include 658 freshmen, 166 transfers, and 14 re-admitted students. There are also 1,955 continuing students, which increases Bethel’s retention rate. “Retention was particularly good this fall, with 91% of last year's non-graduating students returning, which is up from 89.9% last year. This is the second highest return rate in Bethel's history,” says Nelson.
Enrollment numbers for the College of Adult & Professional Studies, Graduate School, and Bethel Seminary will be available at a later date after classes begin.
An enrollment record was set last year with 2,842 students, and fall 2010 had 2,797 students. Enrollment is measured on the 10th day of class – a widely practiced standard for assessing enrollment to allow for initial changes that often occur the first few days of class.