A New Snapshot of Our Student Body
The University has its largest-ever freshman class this fall at 8,092 new Longhorns, an increase of 13.2 percent from last year. Consequently, our total enrollment has increased to 52,213, the second-largest in our history. (Forty-eight more students were enrolled in 2002.)
The growth in enrollment is not the result of a desire to be bigger but of more applications and a greater yield, or number of students who accepted our offer. While we continuously adjust our formulas to get the optimum yield for our campus, and while we must guard against unchecked growth, greater demand for a UT Austin education is a positive indicator — a sign that the University’s reputation is on the rise.
To accommodate the increase in first-time students, we have added advisors, orientation sessions, and other resources. I want to thank David Laude, our newly appointed senior vice provost for enrollment and graduation management, for the work he and his team in the Provost’s Office have already done to identify course needs, including lab capacity, to make sure that seats are available in required courses.
Here are a few key facts and trends from our 12th-day class report:
- We now have 39,977 undergraduates, 11,128 graduate students, and 1,108 law students.
- Our four-year graduation rates have increased to 52.2 percent from 50.9 percent last year; five-year graduation rates increased from 74.2 percent to 75 percent.
- The average composite ACT score for entering freshmen was 28 and the average SAT composite score was 1842.
- Twenty-four percent of all first-time freshmen reported being first-generation college students, slightly up from last year’s 23.7.
- Of our freshmen, 23.8 percent is Hispanic, up from 21 percent last fall; 5 percent is black, up from 4.8 last fall; 18.2 percent is Asian, down from 18.5 last fall; and 45.8 percent is white, down from 48.2 percent last fall.
- For the whole student body, Hispanic students now account for 18.4 percent, up from 17.6 percent. Although black student enrollment grew by 61 students, because of our overall growth their percentage remained flat at 4.5 percent. The percentage of students who are Asian increased to 15.2, up slightly from 15.1. Our percentage of white students declined from 51 to 49.8.
Seeing students begin their college careers — including those in my own freshman seminar — always reminds me of our mission. They infuse the campus with a new energy and excitement each fall. Here’s to the Class of 2016 and to all Longhorn students. They make me proud every day.