URBANA, Ill. (AP) – Fall enrollment at the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign totals 52,331, surpassing by more than 1,000 the record set last year despite the mixture of in-person and online instruction resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic, the school announced Wednesday.
The rise in enrollment numbers is due to a jump in the number of graduate students to 17,802 from a record enrollment of 16,319 in 2019. Undergraduate enrollment is 33,492, a slight drop from 33,850 last year.
“We engaged faculty members and staff throughout the spring and summer to expand our educational opportunities and give students choices about how best to pursue their education while remaining safe,” said Kevin Pitts, the vice provost for undergraduate education.
At 7,530 new students, the freshmen class met the university’s enrollment target, although down from 7,665 last year. An additional 277 students asked to delay their admission to a later term, according to the university.
Illinois developed safety measures that included a saliva-based COVID-19 test administered twice a week to all students residing in the area, as well as to campus personnel who report to university facilities. The university also provided emergency grants to assist several thousand students whose incomes were disrupted or had additional educational expenses caused by the pandemic.
The University of Illinois-Chicago, with 33,518 students, is reporting its sixth consecutive year of record enrollment. There was 1.3% increase in undergraduate students to 21,921 from 21,641 last year.
The University of Illinois-Springfield is reporting a 3% drop in enrollment to 4,146 from 4,275 students last year.
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