WNEU Welcomes Record Number of New Students
SPRINGFIELD — Western New England University (WNEU) announced a second consecutive year of enrollment growth in its recruitment efforts. WNEU reported a total of 899 new students enrolled in classes for the 2017 fall semester, bringing the total opening full-time undergraduate enrollment up to 2,656, the largest in university history.
The university also saw a record number of admissions applications in 2017, totaling 7,037, along with an increase in the diversity of the incoming student population, with minorities representing 26% of the cohort in 2017, up from 21% in 2016.
“We are at a very important time in the history of higher education with respect to how families are assessing the rising cost to attend college. Students are asking the important questions during their college search process; they need and deserve hard data on internships and job-placement rates, the availability of merit- and need-based scholarships, and the support networks that will be in place to enhance their academic and social development. We welcome this,” said Bryan Gross, WNEU’s vice president for enrollment management and marketing. “The fact that Western New England University has been so successful in attracting diverse and highly qualified students while many other universities are experiencing enrollment declines demonstrates that people are taking notice and realizing the true value we offer.”
The university’s College of Arts and Sciences enrolled 403 new students, a 10.1% increase over 2016, while the College of Business enrolled 203 new students, a 3% increase over last year. In the first year of a new Business Impact Scholarship initiative, the College of Business enrolled 67 new students from Hampden, Hampshire and Worcester counties compared to 44 new students from those counties last year. The renewable, $2,000-per-student scholarship was offered to support the recent surge of economic development in the Greater Springfield area, and to encourage business students to remain in Western Mass.
Many students are attracted to the university’s Merit Scholarship program, which rewards previous academic performance. Merit Scholarships will again increase for the fall 2018 academic year to a range from $8,000 to $21,000 annually (each year students maintain good grades), as well as need-based grants.
WNEU students will also soon enjoy a new, four-story, 70,000-square-foot Dining Commons building, scheduled to open in January 2018, as the university continues to expand the campus facilities.