Northern Illinois University

NIU Office of Public Affairs

News Release

Contact: Melanie Magara, NIU Office of Public Affairs
(815) 753-1681

September 19, 2006

New freshman class largest in ten years

Demand for NIU experience continues to grow

DeKalb — NIU’s latest enrollment figures show no letup in increased demand for the NIU experience: Overall enrollment at the official “tenth day” count earlier this month totaled 25,313 – an increase of more than 100 students over the same time last year. Perhaps more telling, say NIU officials, is an increase in applications from first-time college students that brought Northern its largest freshman class in more than a decade. 

“Once again this year, NIU stands out as the university of choice for a significant number of talented students from every background,” said NIU President John Peters. “The word is out about Northern, and it’s clearly a positive message that these students and their families are hearing.”

Among highlights of this year’s enrollment report are the following:

  • New freshman numbers are up 2.6% at 3,247 – NIU’s largest freshman class in a decade.
  • On-campus numbers are up at both the undergraduate and graduate levels, reflecting strategies aimed at better resource allocation.
  • Applications were up in all categories, allowing Enrollment Services staff to build a diverse new class with a wide range backgrounds and abilities. 

According to Brent Gage, assistant vice provost for enrollment services, an increase in the number of returning students provides another positive indicator about the quality of the NIU experience.

“We’re up by about 300 in the number of students who return to NIU after their sophomore and junior years,” Gage said. “That’s a testament to the value our students place on an NIU degree.”

“When we talk about the ‘purposeful building of a new class,’ we mean that NIU takes a thoughtful approach to student recruitment that includes commitment to mission and responsible stewardship of our resources,” Gage added. “This year’s class exemplifies the desire to have our student body mirror today’s northern Illinois marketplace.”

# # #

NIU Tenth Day Enrollment Count (Fall 2006)

  2006 2005 # change % change
New freshman 3,247 3,165 82 2.6
New transfers 1,925 2,169 -244 -11.2
On-campus undergraduate 18,507 18,160 347 1.9
On-campus graduate 4,049 4,006 43 1.1
Off-campus undergraduate 309 307 2 0.6
Off-campus graduate 2,133 2,402 -269 -11.2
Total undergraduate 18,816 18,467 349 1.9
Total graduate 6,182 6,408 -226 -3.5
Law 315 333 -18 -5.4
TOTAL ENROLLMENT 25,313 25,208 105 0.4