Southern Illinois University Edwardsville

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville’s 2013 fall semester is highlighted by record total enrollments in the Schools of Engineering (1,462 students), Nursing (1,062 students) and Pharmacy (325 students).

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville’s 2013 fall semester is highlighted by record total enrollments in the Schools of Engineering (1,462 students), Nursing (1,062 students) and Pharmacy (325 students). Undergraduate programs in the Schools of Education (4.7 percent), Business (4.5 percent) and Nursing (11.8 percent) all are enjoying enrollment increases.

The School of Engineering’s undergraduate enrollment has climbed 11.8 percent (128 students) since last fall and 44 percent during the past five years. Dean Hasan Sevim has overseen steady growth from 1,054 total students in 2008. The School also is experiencing a rise in the ACT scores. This year’s 143 freshmen directly admitted into the school had average math and composite ACT scores of 28.5 and 27.5, respectively.

Sevim said, “Our 2+2 agreements with regional community colleges are providing highly qualified students.”

The new freshman class average ACT (23.0) increased two-tenths of a point over last year and is the highest in University history. The increase is six-tenths of a point better than 2011.

“Our new direct entry options in business, engineering, nursing and pharmacy attracted 170 first time freshmen entering the university, which had a direct impact on the average ACT,” said Scott Belobrajdic, associate vice chancellor for enrollment.

“Their mean ACT is 28. Direct entry allows us to compete for high-achieving students who were opting for direct admit options with private and public competitors in previous years.”

The School of Education also is developing early-entry options for students interested in its undergraduate programs.

New transfers are up to 1,252 students, an increase of 31, which is the highest since 2006.

“An increase in transfer students is a trend that we expect to see continue as families consider financing a college education,” Belobrajdic said.

“The debt accrued to attend college is a highly visible issue, and families are analyzing options to minimize their cost. So, attending a community college to obtain transferable credits and then transferring into a four-year university is a viable option.”

SIUE Fall 2013 Enrollment Facts & Figures:

  • Undergraduate enrollment is up 11.8 percent (128 students) in the School of Engineering
  • Undergraduate enrollment is up 4.7 percent (51 students) in the School of Education
  • Undergraduate enrollment is up 4.5 percent (41 students) in the School of Business
  • Undergraduate enrollment is up 11.8 percent (84 students) in the School of Nursing
  • Schools of Engineering (1,462 students), Nursing (1,062 students) and Pharmacy (325 students) all have record total enrollments
  • New transfer students are up 2.5 percent (31 students)
  • Total of new transfer students is 1,252, largest since 2006
  • Total international enrollment is up 6 percent (19 students)
  • New graduate international enrollment is up 66 percent (36 students)
  • Total new students (freshmen, transfers and international) exceeds 3,000 for 11th consecutive year
  • Freshman Enrollment: 1,966, fourth largest freshman class in SIUE history
  • Total undergraduate enrollment is down 1 percent (112 students)
  • Total graduate and professional enrollment is down 4.6 percent (101 students) 
  • Total 2013-14 Enrollment: 13,850, which ranks fifth all-time at SIUE

Belobrajdic pointed to a decline in high school populations in Illinois and throughout SIUE’s recruiting base as a critical factor for the smaller freshman class this year.

The School of Education’s graduate program accounts for the majority of the decrease in graduate enrollment. Three online programs – master’s in education instructional technology; post-baccalaureate certificate in web-based learning; and master’s in education in kinesiology with a specialization in physical education and sport pedagogy – were added in late August to help the graduate program.

Belobrajdic acknowledged that one of the most challenging aspects of this year’s enrollment trends has been reflected in graduate programs specific to K-12 audiences. These challenges are due in large part to the state’s current economic climate resulting in school budget cutbacks and decreases in professional funding for teachers.

Also impacting graduate enrollments are new state requirements regarding the preparation of school-based administrators, which have been implemented to increase quality and reduce the number of licensed principals in the state through legislated higher program admission requirements and rigorous program standards.

State officials urge more AP classes 

An increasing number of Missouri high school students are taking advanced placement (AP) classes, but state education officials want to see that number grow as they work to prepare students for the challenges of college, other postsecondary education and careers. 

A new report from the College Board, which administers the AP program nationwide, shows that students at public schools in Missouri took 26,486 AP classes in 2012, about 1,800 more than the previous year.  

Education officials say AP classes not only offer the opportunity to earn college credit during high school, but also help students succeed in more rigorous college-level coursework. Research has shown that students who successfully complete AP classes are more likely to attend college, be placed in advanced classes, earn higher grade point averages and graduate in four years. 

"AP classes are one way schools can offer students experience with the kinds of courses they will encounter in college and the increasingly higher expectations of the workplace," said Missouri Commissioner of Education Chris L. Nicastro. "We want to continue to increase the number of students taking AP classes to help them acquire the knowledge and skills they need for the future." 

A majority of colleges and universities award credit to students earning a 3 or higher on AP exams. The number of AP exams receiving a 3 or higher in Missouri increased by nearly 1,000, from 15,653 tests in 2012 to 16,638 tests in 2013. 

While more students in Missouri are successfully completing AP classes, the state ranks 48th among all 50 states and the District of Columbia in the percentage of students participating in the program. 

Preparing students for college and careers is one of the major goals of the Top 10 by 20, which calls for Missouri schools to rank among the top 10 performing states in the national in education by the year 2020. 

For more information about AP classes, visit www.collegeboard.org. For information about how school districts can start an AP program, visit

Vatterott adds Veterinarian Tech program 

Vatterott College has added a new, accredited Veterinarian Technician program at its Fairview Heights, Ill. campus, located at 110 Commercial Lane.

The Veterinarian Technician program is designed to introduce students to the veterinarian field through comprehensive and practical experience. In the classroom, students will take 118 total credits over 90 weeks. Courses ranging from Pharmacology to Microbiology target skills like handling and restraint of animal patients, nursing care, veterinary office procedures and more.

Hands-on experience is then gained through an externship with an area veterinarian facility. Students who wish to work as an entry-level Veterinarian Technician can earn an Associates of Applied Science degree after satisfactorily completing 11.5 externship quarter credit hours and meeting school graduation requirements.

Vatterott College in Fairview Heights is currently enrolling students for the Veterinarian Technician program, with day and evening classes. Financial aid is available for students who qualify.  For more information, visit www.vatterott.edu/fairview_heights.asp or call 618-489-2400.

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