ENMU Sets Record Enrollment

By Marketta A. Davis

Eastern has set yet another enrollment record with a total of 5,574 students, a 9.7 percent increase from last year’s record.  This number includes both undergraduates and graduates comprised of 689 incoming freshmen, an increase of 12 percent from last year’s freshmen figures.  Alongside the enrollment and first-time freshmen records, student credit hours have grown by 6 percent and the freshman retention rate—how many students returned to ENMU—has gone from 62 to 64 percent.

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ENMU’s enrollment encompasses a diverse student population that includes increases in ethnicity statistics as well.  Last year, approximately 31.5 percent of the population was Hispanic, 4.2 was African-American, 2.2 was Native American, 2.4 was International, 0.9 was Asian/Pacific Islander, and 54.1 was White (with 4.7 percent being accounted for students of two or more races or unknown).  This year, according to the Multicultural Affairs office, 30.17 percent of the students are Hispanic, 5.79 percent is Black/African-American, 2.98 is American Indian/Alaskan Native, 2.45 percent is International, 1.68 percent is Asian/Pacific Islander and 56.94 is White.

“We’re very happy with enrollment, in terms of numbers and quality,” said Eastern New Mexico University President Dr. Steven Gamble. Gamble is the ninth president to serve at ENMU.  He was the former president of Southern Arkansas University and arrived in Portales in 2001.  He believes Eastern to be a great institution because of its quality reputation and image in the region.  “We have a safe, attractive, and friendly campus in which students truly get personal attention from the faculty and staff,” he said.  Gamble credits some of Eastern’s popularity to the economy, explaining how it is a university that provides a quality education at an affordable price.

With the incoming freshmen making up a sizable number of the undergraduate student body, the Advising Center has been one of the busiest offices on campus. Mickie Stowe, one of the student advisors, has not only counseled students from New Mexico and surrounding states, but also from as far away California, Massachusetts, and Washington, D.C.  According to Stowe, some of the most common declared majors have been business administration, communicative disorders—because it is an online degree—and education.  Gamble also notes other popular majors being nursing, biology, criminal justice, and psychology.

Eastern New Mexico University first opened its door in 1934 and has since offered a variety of programs to assist students in becoming successful in their “academic, personal and professional lives.”  Gamble takes pride in our students, faculty, and staff alike in creating the necessary environment for quality educational opportunities in higher education.

“Eastern is committed to providing our students the opportunity to excel in both [academic and social success] because we know that they complement each other in enabling students to enjoy a successful career and personal life.”

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