Enrollment Positive at Northwest Nazarene University

October 6, 2009, 7:32 pm

Northwest Nazarene University is pleased to report that fall enrollment nearly matches 2008’s record-setting numbers. The report released today indicates solid financial health during uncertain economic times. This semester 1,934 degree-seeking students are registered: 1,312 undergraduates and 622 graduate students compared to 1,944 students last fall. During the last five years, overall enrollment has increased by 19 percent.

In response to the positive report President David Alexander stated, “We are gratified. Our ongoing commitment to educating students in a dynamic Christ-centered environment with excellence and affordability is evident in these numbers. We continue to hold to our promise to make quality private education available to students and families seeking a faith-based college experience.”  He added, “The university has worked diligently to ensure access to students and families at a time when financial and job markets fluctuated.” Nearly $14 million in financial aid scholarships and grants have been distributed to undergraduate students for the 2009 school year.

“We are pleased to report the enrollment of 388 new students and a strong retention of last year’s record-setting freshman class,” said Stacey Berggren, director of admissions. The retention rate of the 2008 freshman class is the highest since 2001, and is attributed to the University’s commitment to foster and invest in each student’s experience.

Berggren added, “Increased diversity among the student body is also indicative of our commitment to provide an affordable quality educational opportunity.”

Eleven Chinese students, nine of whom are exchange students from Northwest University in Xi’an, P.R. China, joined new and returning students. Some are working on bachelor’s degrees while others enrolled in master’s courses.

A team effort positively impacts enrollment. “The addition of new graduate programs and strong overall enrollment was made possible by extraordinary teamwork of the campus community.” Alexander added, “Faculty, staff and administrative personnel all worked together positively guiding prospective students. I’m extremely grateful for the entrepreneurial spirit of our program directors.”

This past year NNU introduced two online programs—the master of nursing and education specialist programs. These programs join the already-growing online master’s programs that are offered in Christian education, spiritual formation, divinity, business administration and reading. NNU’s established master programs in counseling, social work, business administration, education and pastoral ministry continue to enroll a solid number of students. The increase in graduate enrollment represents students who value a quality education as well as character and spiritual development. “We understand that in today’s economy undergraduate majors, graduate degrees and continuing education programs from NNU are highly regarded and provide a value-added benefit in the workplace,” said Dr. Sam Dunn, vice president for academic affairs. “It’s our desire to continue developing new programs to provide life-long learning opportunities at the undergraduate and graduate levels.”

Areas of study that have notable growth in new student enrollment this year include art and design, biology (pre-med), chemistry, kinesiology/recreation sports management, music: applied and general, nursing and secondary education.  Other majors of high interest include business administration, Christian ministries, elementary education, engineering physics, mass and public communications, political science, psychology and social work.

For more information, please contact Hollie Lindner at or by calling (208) 467-8531.

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