Fall Enrollment Looks Stronger Than Expected
Humboldt State University is seeing quite a few more students than expected this fall, with enrollment coming in above projections for both new and returning students.
This semester was not what students hoped for, given the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. But HSU students’ determination to pursue and continue their education and improve their lives is a powerful reminder of why Humboldt State is here.
As of the first week of classes, 6,471 students are enrolled at Humboldt State. While that is 7.5 percent fewer than last year, it is far better than the 20 percent decline that had been expected due to recent trends and the impact of the pandemic.
New transfer students, in fact, have increased by 14.4 percent. That means HSU has welcomed 943 new transfers, which is 119 more than last year and the most since 2017.
The data won’t be official until census, which is late September.
Preliminary Fall enrollment highlights:
• At 6,471, total enrollment is down just 7.5 percent compared to last year.
• 550 first-time freshmen are enrolled, which is 50 more than had been expected.
• 943 new transfers have enrolled, the most since 2017 and 119 more than last year.
• First-year retention is currently at 75 percent, the same as last year.
HSU’s Enrollment Management team, faculty, and others partnered this year to increase recruitment and outreach to community colleges and high schools. Adapting to virtual recruitment, HSU significantly increased communication and opportunities for direct engagement between prospective students and faculty during the summer. As an example, the University hosted more than 60 academic departmental and support service webinars for new students.
HSU also increased communications about aid awards and the admissions process, and worked hard to process transfer student transcripts and remain responsive to students in the process of choosing a school and enrolling. Enrollment Management and the Early Opportunity Program intensified targeted outreach to prospective students with phone-call and texting campaigns.
Using email, social media, print, and the University’s new chatbot, personalized content is being delivered to students to assist with removing barriers to registration. HSU sent more than 70,000 personalized emails and 11,000 text reminders about holds, registration dates, and meetings with academic advisors.
The University continues to work hard to keep the community safe while continuing the academic programs it’s known for. The Fall semester began Aug. 26 with virtual instruction, and a limited face-to-face instruction begins on Sept. 8 and continues through Nov. 6.