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CMU sees enrollment gains, but headcount remains down

Rick Brewer

For the first time in eight years, Central Michigan University saw an uptick in freshman, international and transfer student enrollment when compared to numbers from 2021.

Over 2,000 freshman enrolled at CMU this past fall, a 5% increase from 2021, and a 200% increase in international students. Changes in COVID-19 polices are being attributed to that spike.

However, despite the positive growth, according to university officials, the overall headcount is still declining.

"What's happening is you're graduating higher number of students than you're actually bringing in," said Vice President of Recruitment and Retention, Jennifer Dehaemers. "And so that creates a little bit of a gap, or a hole that you have to fill."

Dehaemers says the university has revamped several recruiting initiatives and has allowed more students to enroll in the College of Business and College of Science and Engineering.

Dehaemers added that students are also staying on campus for shorter lengths of time and coming into CMU with more college credits from advanced placement courses in high school.

"Students can get a lot more college credit, while they're still in high school. Students who are coming to Central are bringing more transferable college credit with them. So, they may only need to be here for three years instead of four," said Dehaemers.

Rick Brewer has been news director at WCMU since February 2024.