Oregon State University sets record for fall enrollment
Oregon’s largest university continues to grow.
Oregon State University said Tuesday it has a record number of students enrolled this fall. That means it continues to be the state’s largest university, with 34,108 students enrolled this fall, an increase of more than 2% from last year.
The record-breaking enrollment includes students from OSU’s main campus in Corvallis, as well as other locations in Oregon, and its online program Ecampus.
“Oregon State University is fully energized and enjoying significant momentum with returning students to our campuses in Corvallis and Bend, and engaged in learning from around the world in our top ranked online degree programs OSU Interim President Becky Johnson said in a statement. .
OSU saw a 5.2% increase in the number of students of color this fall compared to last year and a 1.3% increase in the number of transfer students.
Oregon State’s online Ecampus program has seen a substantial increase – 14% this fall on top of an 18% increase last year. OSU has grown to more than 8,500 students over the past decade thanks to the Ecampus program, according to the university.
“I think this is the wave of the future,” said Jon Boeckenstedt, vice president of registration management at OSU.
Boeckenstedt said OSU built its campus online, long before the pandemic, and it has paid off.
“This is a grassroots effort started at Oregon State University,” he said. “It’s not an integrated program that we bought from a for-profit institution and made it look like the state of Oregon. It’s really our faculty and our administration that make our real programs, and I think the students understand that, and I think they appreciate it.
Boeckenstedt said that while the Ecampus attracts students from across the country and outside of the United States, Oregon remains OSU’s “primary market”.
Oregon students represent over 70% of undergraduate students seeking an OSU degree at its main campus in Corvallis and over 80% of total enrollment at its Cascades campus in Bend.
Still, Boeckenstedt said, the university is expanding its activities to out-of-state students in states like California.
“Our non-resident students in the freshman class this year were about 40% higher than last year,” he said. “So while resident student enrollments were on the rise, much of the increase in fall enrollment in the state of Oregon came from students coming from outside of Oregon. “
OSU has seen a slight decline in some student populations. According to the university, the university has seen an 11% decrease in the number of international students since last fall and a very slight decrease in the number of first-generation undergraduates.
Boeckenstedt said the university is keeping in mind that many of its newly enrolled in-person students have primarily come from online learning last year.
“It’s an important thing for us as educators that we have to think about, recognize and accommodate, that the students have been through a lot,” he said. “We want to make sure that when they get to the state of Oregon, they turn on, and if they can’t turn on, we upgrade them as quickly as possible. “
Not all public universities in Oregon have yet released enrollment numbers for this fall term. But, in addition to the OSU record, the University of Oregon earlier this fall reported a record freshman number.
It comes after many colleges and universities in Oregon saw their enrollments drop last fall during the height of the pandemic.
The State of Oregon and the Oregon Institute of Technology were the only two public universities in the state to report enrollment growth a year ago, according to data from the Coordinating Commission of the higher education in Oregon.