By Patrick Lynn
Enrollment at UW-Stevens Point has risen for the first time in seven years, according to new statistics released by the school this week.
First-year students increased by 25 percent on the Stevens Point campus to 1,569, which is up 314 students from fall 2019. It’s the strongest gain in the UW System, the school said, as UW-Stevens Point “has never had such a record-setting increase in first-year students.”
The recruitment team used a more personalized and data-driven approach, said Marc Young, director of Admissions and Recruitment.
“We explored new ideas and created innovative strategies to meet students in ways that were both convenient and familiar to them,” Young said. “We’re delighted so many students decided UW-Stevens Point was the best fit to help them pursue their academic and career goals.”
The Stevens Point campus has 7,315 students, an increase of 64 from last fall. Enrollment grew for the first time since 2012.
“After seven years of declines, our counts tell a very compelling story,” said Laura Bell, director of Enrollment Operations. “UW-Stevens Point has reshaped what it means to navigate this journey to discovering purpose. We value each student’s unique perspective and career aspirations.”
Enrollment at all three campuses totaled 8,229. UW-Stevens Point was among four of the 13 UWs to see enrollment increase this fall. UW-Stevens Point at Wausau has 531 students, and the Marshfield campus has 383 students. At Wausau, first-year students increased 17 to 179. First-year students at Marshfield declined 20 to 66.
Graduate students continued to grow, up 22 percent to 591 students overall. Growth was led by the master’s in business administration program now available at all three campuses; and master’s programs in education, athletic training, and community organizational leadership.
In terms of diversity, Bell said she was pleased first-year under-represented minority students increased by 101 students or nearly 4 percent, at the Stevens Point campus. Diverse students make up 13 percent of total enrollment.
“We are so proud to showcase the tremendous progress being made at UW-Stevens Point, and it’s clear that students from far and wide value the diverse opportunities at this outstanding university,” said Laura Bell, director of Enrollment Operations.
Retention of students from their first to second years at UW-Stevens Point also improved, the school said.
With the coronavirus pandemic and necessary precautions in place to keep everyone on campus safe, students began the fall semester in unprecedented circumstances.
“The university is working to persevere through difficult times and to help students recognize the value of resilience this situation is instilling in all of us,” Bell said.