Pfeiffer University sees another record enrollment
MISENHEIMER — After welcoming one of its largest classes in recent history for the 2017-18 academic year, Pfeiffer University continues to grow.
This year’s incoming undergraduate class is 10 percent bigger than last year and 50 percent bigger than two years ago.
In the same two-year comparison, overall enrollment on the Misenheimer campus has risen by 18 percent. The Honors College class is at capacity for the second year in a row.
University President Colleen Perry Keith attributes the growth to a change in the recruitment process.
“Two years ago, Pfeiffer began recruiting prospective students and their families differently,” she said. “Our work in marketing along with how we are managing communication with prospective students is effective in sharing the advantages of choosing Pfeiffer for one’s college experience. Back-to-back record numbers in our entering class is evidence that we are on the right track.”
Enrollment is not the only statistic on the rise. The student population includes residents of 27 states and 21 countries. Campus visits and the number of applications have shown a dramatic increase.
“We are blessed to have an experienced admissions team,” says Emily Carella, director of undergraduate admissions. “Momentum was high coming off a record-setting year, and with that confidence, we were able to deliver another amazing class. You could not ask for a better admissions team. The collaboration between admissions and athletics is the best I’ve seen in my professional career. We all work really well together.”
The unprecedented growth has not come without its challenges. On-campus residency has risen 22 percent in two years. Renovations to residence halls had to be completed to accommodate students who want to live on campus. Plans to improve student facilities are ongoing, and the number of campus events has increased in an effort to enhance student life.
Regina Simmons, director of residence life, is already planning for the next class of students.
“This year, we had to change residence hall designations to help manage the shift in the gender,” Simmons said. “We had a heavier balance toward men in the past; this year, that shifted dramatically toward women. We anticipate next year’s population will be similar. We will need to add necessary beds to campus to meet this demand.”
Despite the challenges, the positive impact of Pfeiffer’s growth can be seen on campus and in surrounding communities.
“We see an immediate increase in sales once students are back in the village,” saysKim Bryant, general manager of McDonald’s in Richfield. “We look forward to having the students back on campus each year.”
Stacy Allman, unit director at Bojangles’, agreed.
“I’m always glad when Pfeiffer comes back,” she says.
It’s something President Keith is proud to hear.
“It’s evident that Pfeiffer’s success translates throughout the community. We look forward to growing with our neighbors,” she said.
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