The Kansas State University Polytechnic Campus is reporting an increase in freshmen enrollment, despite challenges from the COVID-19 pandemic. This milestone comes in a year where institutions across the country were faced with balancing the safety of students and the educational experience.
Full-time equivalency and headcount at Kansas State Polytechnic are up from 2019. Full-time equivalency, or FTE, is up nearly 12% to 530. The Kansas Board of Regents calculates full-time equivalency by dividing the total number of undergraduate credit hours taken in a semester by 15.
This is the third year in a row the freshmen population has grown. The freshman class of 136 is up 32% from 2019. For the second year in a row, on-campus residency at K-State Polytechnic is at full capacity, requiring the assistance of off-campus space to accommodate the surge in students.
“K-State Polytechnic’s mission is resonating with prospective students,” said Alysia Starkey, CEO and dean at K-State Polytechnic. “An emphasis on hands-on learning, career readiness and personalized education are what our students are after, and we’re proud to be able to provide this kind of educational environment. Our enrollment management team, professional advisors and faculty do a great job ensuring individual students’ goals are met every step of the way.”
Programs on the K-State Polytechnic Campus support applied business, aviation, social work and STEM careers. Degree options in these focus areas have seen substantial growth, increasing by 40%, 25%, 22% and 12%, respectively. Enrollment in online programs increased by 10%. The polytechnic model of education centers on bringing real-world experiences into the classroom, whether on campus or online. More than 66% of learning space on the Polytechnic Campus is hands-on labs.
“It’s an exciting time to be part of this campus,” said Christopher Smith, executive director of enrollment management, marketing and financial aid at K-State Polytechnic. “We’ve seen a rise in multiple areas across enrollment management, with total applications at K-State Polytechnic up 33%, an increase in in-state applications up 6%; out-of-state applications up 61%; and our most diverse population in five years. We understand that families invest time and financial support, and we work to provide a degree with a purpose.”
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