UT administrators are trying to get a head start in accommodating the class of 2017, estimating that 7,200 freshmen will come on campus next fall.
While predictions are not set in stone for another month, Kedra Ishop, vice provost and director of admissions, said the University is predicting its new class of first-year students will decrease by almost 900 enrollees. Last year, UT admitted 8,092 first-year students — a 13.2 percent increase from the previous fall and the largest freshman class in history. The University had to add hire additional lecturers, assistant instructors and advisers to accommodate the increase. UT also had to schedule more sections of high demand entry-level courses.
Ishop said the University adjusted its admission offers this year to meet its goal of 7,200 students.
“The University will do all that it can do to provide resources and support to help our students succeed,” Ishop said. “We are constantly accessing our incoming class in order to meet the needs of students who enter the University.”
UT offers admissions to students based on a formula that takes into account students who will decline the offer to attend the University.
The School of Undergraduate Studies, which saw the largest freshman enrollment of all other UT colleges last August, is expected to enroll 1,280 freshmen once all final decisions are made — about 250 fewer students than last’s year’s class. This is because of efforts by UT Admissions to bring the number of students admitted down to the 7,100 to 7,200 range after last year’s unusually large freshman class, said David Spight, undergraduate studies assistant dean.
“We’re expecting 600-700 to declare successfully after this spring,” Spight said. “That should put our overall enrollment at 2,200 this Fall 2013 semester.”
The number of students currently enrolled in UGS has dropped from 2,100 to a little more than 1,600 as a result of currently enrolled students transferring into another college and major throughout the academic year.
Division of Housing and Food Service has received nearly 7,500 housing applications for on campus housing. Last fall, there was a housing shortage and UT entered the semester with students still on the waitlist.
“Based on the information we have received from admissions, there should be plenty of room for the Class of 2017 to live on campus,” said Laurie Mackey, director for Division of Housing and Food Service.
Mackey said it is typical for about 4,500 to 5,000 freshman to end up sleeping in the 7,000 beds on campus each year.
Numbers for the incoming class could still fluctuate, despite admissions’ estimates. Newly admitted students have until May 1 to accept or decline their admission into UT.