sealPurdue News

August 27, 1996

Purdue enrollment up at West Lafayette, systemwide

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. -- Led by the second largest group of new freshmen at the West Lafayette campus in the university's history, Purdue's systemwide enrollment is expected to increase by almost 600 students, officials announced today (Tuesday, 8/27).

David B. Henson, vice president for student services, said enrollment systemwide is estimated at 64,041. At West Lafayette, enrollment increased 471 students to 35,156. Freshmen comprised the biggest class at 7,728 students, the second largest group of freshman students since the record set in 1988.

"We are obviously pleased with the enrollment growth," Henson said. "We think Purdue is an excellent place to learn, and people throughout the campus have worked hard during the past year to help young people come to the same conclusion."

Henson said the undergraduate schools have been working closely with the Office of Admissions on student recruitment. "The partnerships that have been developed have put students in contact with faculty and staff within the undergraduate schools early in the decision-making process," he said. "That personal contact with the academic staff, I think, is a critical difference in which institution a student selects."

The number of first-year students at the West Layette campus increased for the second straight year during a time when other institutions are having difficulty recruiting new high-school graduates, said Douglas L. Christiansen, director of admissions.

In addition to the personal contact, students appreciate a quick response when they apply to a school, Christiansen said. "The integrated application process is one of the important things we do for potential students," he said. "Once we receive a student's application, high-school transcript, standardized test scores and application fee, we can have a decision about admission and information about costs, financial aid and on-campus housing on the way back to the student in two days."

The undergraduate enrollment at the West Lafayette campus rose 585 students to 28,567, said Marlesa A. Roney, registrar.

Graduate school enrollment is down 240 students to 6,157. The number of students seeking professional degrees in pharmacy and pharmacal sciences increased 128 students this year to 183. Enrollment in the veterinary medicine professional degree program is down two students from last year to 249.

The West Lafayette enrollment consists of 20,255 men and 14,901 women, a ratio of 4 to 3, the same as last year. Of those enrolled in undergraduate programs, 74 percent are Indiana residents.

The report shows a slight decrease in ethnic enrollment. There are 1,229 African-American students this fall compared with 1,247 a year ago. The Asian-American student population decreased by nine to 1,345. The number of Hispanic students at Purdue is 737, down from 744 students. American Indian enrollment increased by 11 students to 157.

Although student enrollment at West Lafayette increased, it did not do so at the expense of admission standards, Christiansen said. "Admission criteria have not changed at all from previous years," he said.

Enrollments at other Purdue campuses are expected to remain fairly steady. Enrollment at Calumet and Indianapolis and in Statewide Technology is still in progress.


Sources: David B. Henson (765) 494-5776; e-mail,

Marlesa A. Roney (765) 494-6133; e-mail,

Douglas L. Christiansen (765) 494-1776; e-mail,

Victor L. Lechtenberg, (765) 494-8392; e-mail,

Dennis J. Weidenaar, (765) 494-4366; e-mail,

Don K. Gentry, (765) 494-2552

Writer: J. Michael Willis (765) 494-0371; e-mail,

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