Westminster College Sees Dramatic Increase in Diversity of 2006 Freshman Class
August 23, 2006
7% Freshman Enrollment Growth Runs Counter to Current State-Wide Trends
Salt Lake City (August 23, 2005) -The Westminster College campus will be significantly more diverse this fall with a major increase in out-of-state freshman and freshmen from under-represented groups. This fall, fully 33% of Westminster’s freshman are non-Utahns, representing 30 states and nine countries - up from 20% last fall. In addition, 23% of Westminster freshman this year represent diverse backgrounds - up from 16% last year. Students who identified themselves as Hispanics, American Indian, African American and Asian are among the under-represented population these numbers refer to.
A total of 380 freshman started classes today, an increase of 7% over the 2005 incoming class. This increase is surprising, particularly in light of recent news reports which suggest stagnant to declining growth in enrollment at state colleges and universities.
Westminster Vice President of Enrollment, Joel Bauman remarked, “It is almost unheard of for a college like Westminster to increase its diversity, both geographically and ethnically, among a freshman class in such a dramatic fashion over a single year.” The college attributes the increase in both out-of-state students and traditionally under-represented students to concerted efforts by the admissions office to increase diversity on campus, new facilities and programs, including the new Dolores Doré Eccles Health, Wellness, and Athletics Center, and new athletic programs, as well as the increased national recognition the college has received.
“We are pleased with this class profile because it also supports the college’s belief that in order to create the most enriching educational environment possible, it is important to give students the opportunity to learn in a diverse environment. Westminster’s class of 2010 will certainly benefit from this diversity,” added Bauman.
In terms of pure academic accomplishment, the freshman class at Westminster possesses an average high school grade point average of 3.5, well above the national average for high school seniors. The Westminster College class of 2009 also includes:
- 9 Valedictorians
- 14 National Hispanic Scholars
- 4 National Merit Finalists
- 1 National Merit Semi-Finalist
- 1 National Achievement Finalist (African American students)
- 2 National Achievement Semifinalists (African American students)
- 3 Sterling Scholar Regional Winners (Full tuition)
- 4 Sterling Scholar Regional Runners-up
- 9 Exemplary Achievement Scholars