Despite the negative impact COVID-19 has had for many institutions in higher education, Northwest Nazarene University President Joel Pearsall announced Tuesday that enrollment for Spring 2021 is the highest spring enrollment NNU has seen in the last several years. The total undergraduate and graduate enrollment for Spring 2021 is 1,912 students, including 1,223 undergraduates and 689 graduate students. This follows fall enrollment numbers that had also increased from the previous year.
"To experience growth during a pandemic is rare among universities,” Mark Cork, Associate Vice President of Marketing and Communications said. “With all that is going on in our world, these excellent numbers are an affirmation of the continued excellence in education that NNU provides and a reflection of our Community First commitment and the hard work of every member of our NNU Community. Being Here for Good continues to be a promise worth keeping.”
NNU has been providing face-to-face classes on campus since August 31, 2020, with the exception of a brief one-week proactive “stay-in-place” directive in early November. The ability to have students on campus engaging in face-to-face learning is due, in large part, to the innovative asymptomatic saliva screening NNU implemented early-September as part of their COVID-19 health protocols. The SalivaDirect protocol that NNU is using was developed at Yale University and is being carried out by trained NNU undergraduate research assistants under the supervision of Dr. Jennifer Chase, NNU professor of biology. All community members are encouraged to participate in the saliva screening twice a week. Spring semester began in person on January 12, 2021.