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Eckerd College Fall 2012 Enrollment Highest in Eckerd's History

posted on 08/16/2012

Eckerd's Armacost Library

Eckerd College announces its highest fall enrollment numbers in the College's 54-year history. "Eckerd College projects that it will have 1,870 full-time equivalent* students during the 2012-13 academic year," said John Sullivan, Dean of Admission and Financial Aid. "This final number is 50 students over and above our overall projected goal for the Fall 2012 Term."

For Autumn Term, Eckerd welcomed 565 new freshmen and transfer students, which surpassed the College's goal of 523. When the remaining transfer students arrive, Eckerd’s new student enrollment is projected to total 603, surpassing the College’s goal of 570. Furthermore, retention is at 90%, tracking that of the top liberal arts colleges nationwide. The last time that the College experienced a similar surge was in 2009 when the fall enrollment numbers clocked in at 1,842, 41 students over goal.

Dean Sullivan attributes Eckerd's bumper crop of students to multiple efforts, including facility renovations and additions. "Students and families want to see new buildings. The successful completion of the College's recent fundraising campaign—which exceeded its $80 million goal raising more than $83 million, the construction of the outdoor GO Pavilion, and the impressive Center for Molecular and Life Sciences opening in time for the Spring 2013 Term have stirred positive buzz. These are all signs that 'this school is on the move'."

Intensified recruitment methods and overall College strategies also contribute to the uptick. "In addition to targeting new markets, we have seen growth in the number of in-state student enrollment," continues Dean Sullivan. "Combined with our improved communications with high school counselors, increased interactions between current parents and parents of admitted students, and consistent messaging upheld across all sectors of the College, a natural synergy has emerged for our historic enrollment numbers."

Eckerd College full-time equivalent numbers at-a-glance:
Fall 2009 – 1,842
Fall 2010 – 1,815
Fall 2011 – 1,817
Fall 2012 – 1,870

As tuition costs continue to dominate the national conversation, David Warren, President of the National Association and Independent Colleges and Universities (NAICU) and a 15-year veteran of the Eckerd College Board of Trustees, reinforced Eckerd's enrollment swell, "Even in these economic times, the value of a private higher education is unsurpassed. Generous aid policies that significantly lower students' out-of-pocket expenses, personal attention from faculty and staff that allows more of our students to graduate on-time than at public institutions, and higher levels of academic and  campus engagement are all hallmarks of private colleges. "

The College continues to attract about 20% of its students from Florida. Scholarships and grants through State of Florida programs, such as the Florida Resident Access Grant, Florida Bright Futures Scholarship and the Florida Student Assistance Grant, enable in-state residents to realize an undergraduate liberal arts education of the highest quality from Eckerd College.

About Eckerd College
Eckerd College invites students to ThinkOutside. Located on 188 acres of waterfront property in St. Petersburg, Florida, Eckerd is a pioneer of innovation—developing programs that have been adopted nationwide and earning the College an international reputation for academic excellence.

A private, coeducational college of liberal arts and sciences related by covenant to the Presbyterian Church (USA), Eckerd College has a diverse student body with 1,870 students from 48 states and 32 countries and is one of only 40 schools listed in Loren Pope's Colleges that Change Lives. In 2003, Eckerd became one of the youngest colleges to receive a Phi Beta Kappa chapter. Eckerd also serves more than 1,000 students annually through its Program for Experienced Learners. The Leadership Development Institute, Academy of Senior Professionals, and offerings through the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute and Road Scholar program identify the College as a national leader in continuing education.

Eckerd's first priority is to teach students how to learn—at any age. And the best education is one that prepares you for the how, as well as the what, an education that teaches you to ThinkOutside.

*Full-time equivalent (FTE) defined: The number of full-time students added to the full-time equivalent number of part-time students

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