Campus: CSU Fresno -- October 18, 2001

Fresno State Enrollment Tops 20,000 For The First Time

For the first time in history, enrollment at California State University, Fresno has topped 20,000 students.

Final fall 2001 enrollment census reports from the university show fall student enrollment at 20,013 students, an increase of 5 percent over last fall's figures. Fresno State's enrollment this year exceeds growth goals set by the California State University system.

"Achieving an enrollment of more than 20,000 students is a significant milestone for Fresno State," said President John D. Welty. "The continuing growth in enrollment affirms the growing reputation of our academic programs."

Fresno State joins eight other California State University campuses with enrollments above 20,000 students. The others are Fullerton, Long Beach, Los Angeles, Northridge, Sacramento, San Diego, San Francisco and San Jose.

Welty identifies Fresno State's Smittcamp Family Honors College as a major factor spurring student interest in Fresno State. For the fall 2001 semester, 75 incoming freshman received a Smittcamp Family Honors College scholarship, which pays student fees, provides a $200 book allowance and full room rent for those who choose campus housing in a residence hall. The newest honors students were selected from more than 500 applications received from throughout California.

Smittcamp students receive additional privileges on campus such as enrollment in special honors classes, priority registration for all courses, use of the new Smittcamp Family Honors College Center, a free laptop computer, unlimited Internet access and graduation with honors.

The Smittcamp Family Honors College began in 1998 with a $1 million gift from the Earl and Muriel Smittcamp and family, a prominent agribusiness family and longtime supporters of Fresno State.

This fall the overall enrollment at Fresno State of first-time freshmen grew by 3.3 percent, from 1,941 to 2,005 students. The university's enrollment of first-time freshmen has increased by 23 percent over the past five years.

"This continuing growth in the number of new freshmen at Fresno State is extremely significant," said Bernie Vinovrski, assistant vice president of enrollment services. "New students are convinced that Fresno State is a quality institution that is affordable and produces outstanding graduates."

Vinovrski attributes the continuing enrollment growth to successful recruitment and communications efforts by the university.

"Students are starting to appreciate the relationship building and mentorship with faculty that takes place when you spend four years at an institution," Vinovrski said. "Also, a wide variety of student activities makes Fresno State a fun place to be."

The university also showed growth in the number of students transferring from community colleges and other institutions, as well as in continuing students. Transfer enrollment increased by 6.6 percent, from 1,660 to 1,769 students. Continuing students grew by 4.2 percent, from 12,245 to 12,755. New graduate enrollment also grew by 1.6 percent, from 1,122 to 1,414 students.

The individual college showing the most growth last year was the Kremen School of Education and Human Development, growing from 1,265 to 1,363 students. The Craig School of Business also increased its enrollment from 1,600 to 1,699. The College of Arts and Humanities grew from 3,445 students to 3,647, and the College of Health and Human Services grew from 1,870 students to 1,923.

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