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For Immediate Release
September 12, 2019

Purdue University Fort Wayne Posts Increases in Fall 2019 Enrollment

Key Info

  • Fall 2019 enrollment numbers are in
  • Total enrollment is 10,208
  • 1,609 new freshmen, an increase of 3.6 percent
  • 511 graduate students enrolled, up 7.6 percent
Purdue University Fort Wayne Posts Increases in Fall 2019 Enrollment Image 1
Helmke Library is always busy when classes are in session. Print-quality image
Purdue University Fort Wayne Posts Increases in Fall 2019 Enrollment Image 2
Mastodon Way is filled with students when classes let out. Print-quality image

Purdue University Fort Wayne begins the new academic year with gains in new student enrollment across the board, including new freshmen, graduate students, transfer students, and international students.

Following its first year as part of the Purdue University system and fully immersed in the new brand, Purdue Fort Wayne’s total enrollment for the fall semester has reached 10,208 students. For the second year in a row, on-campus student housing is at full capacity.

“We are delighted that so many students from across Indiana and the Midwest are choosing Purdue Fort Wayne to pursue their education,” says Ronald L. Elsenbaumer, Chancellor of Purdue Fort Wayne. “We made significant enrollment gains last fall, so the increases this year are on top of a bar that was already set very high. We continue to employ aggressive student recruitment and marketing strategies, and we’re pleased to see the results of those efforts.”

Enrollment of new students entering the university for the first time totaled 2,512 students, which is an increase of 1.9 percent over last fall. This includes 1,609 new freshmen, an increase of 3.6 percent. The total number of graduate students enrolled, including non-degree-seeking students, increased 7.6 percent to a total of 511 students. International student enrollment is up 8.8 percent for a total of 285 students. The number of high school students enrolled in dual-credit courses rose 24.3 percent to 2, 859.

“This is our first complete enrollment cycle recruiting fully under the Purdue University brand, and we are extremely pleased with the results,” says Carl Drummond, Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs and Enrollment Management. “Purdue Fort Wayne offers an extensive selection of majors and programs that are appealing to students and that help prepare them for a lifetime of success. We continue to remain nimble in order to meet the demands of both our students and employers.”

More than 9,400, or 92.5 percent, of Purdue Fort Wayne’s total student enrollment this fall is from Indiana, and an increasing number of students are being recruited from Indianapolis and South Bend. Additionally, enrollment from neighboring states that participate in the Midwest Student Exchange Program increased by more than 19 percent compared to last year. These students pay a reduced out-of-state tuition that is 150 percent of the in-state tuition rate.

This influx of students from outside of the region and the state for the second year in a row has had a dramatic impact on student housing on campus. Last year, the university experienced a 33 percent increase in the number of students living in campus housing. This year, an additional increase of 8.2 percent has necessitated that the university develop housing options for 160 new beds for students. The university now has a record 1,247 students living in on-campus and off-campus university-contracted housing.

“We have been creative and deliberate in adding new, university-managed beds, both in our on-campus student apartments and through contracts with neighboring apartment complexes,” says Chancellor Elsenbaumer. “As more and more students from outside the region choose Purdue Fort Wayne, we have an urgent need to develop solutions to meet this continuing demand for student housing.”

Several of Purdue Fort Wayne’s eight colleges and schools also experienced enrollment growth this fall, with the College of Visual and Performing Arts increasing by 7.5 percent and the Doermer School of Business increasing by 4.1 percent. Enrollment in the Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.) program increased by 33.8 percent, in stark contrast to declining national enrollment trends in M.B.A. programs. The Purdue Fort Wayne School of Music, now in its second year of operation, experienced an increase of 32.6 percent, due in large part to the success of the Purdue Fort Wayne Sweetwater Music Center, which experienced a 161 percent increase in its Music Industry program and a 150 percent increase in its Popular Music program. Mathematical Sciences experienced an increase of 27.9 percent.

The university continues to enjoy a diverse mix of students from around the country and around the world. Students enrolled for fall 2019 represent 34 states and Puerto Rico, and international students represent 51 countries. The student population self-identifies as approximately 7.6 percent Hispanic or Latino, 5.4 percent Black or African American, and 3.6 percent Asian.