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Trine welcomes increased numbers as classes open for the fall

Trine University welcomed record numbers to its main campus for the start of classes today, Aug. 10.

A record group of new students and a larger percentage of returning students are contributing to the university’s growth. The university also is seeing growth in the population of international graduate students.

The gains demonstrate the value of a Trine education, university President Earl D. Brooks II, Ph.D., said, especially given the current challenges faced by higher education institutions.

“With more than 99 percent of our graduates employed or in graduate school over the past seven years, almost all in their field of study, students and their families know that a Trine degree is the springboard to a successful life and career,” Brooks said. “That’s a powerful draw in these uncertain economic times.”

While Trine won’t report its final headcount until September, the university currently has more than 2,300 on its main campus, which started classes today. This includes more than 700 new students, both incoming freshmen and transfers.

Retention of existing students also jumped this year to 84%.

Thanks to extensive measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19 on campus, Trine University’s classrooms, laboratories, common spaces and residential facilities are ready to accommodate the increased numbers.

“It’s exciting to have students and the energy they bring back on campus,” said Brooks. “We worked very hard over the summer to prepare for their return, and we’re glad to be able to provide a quality on-campus experience this fall while maintaining a healthy environment.”

The university expects more than 900 students to be enrolled in its College of Graduate and Professional Studies, which begins classes Aug. 24. CGPS is expected to enroll more than 100 new international graduate students, who will be part of a total Trine population of more than 650 international students.

Trine also will have more than 200 enrolled at its Fort Wayne Center for Health Sciences, which starts classes Aug. 17.

Trine’s success comes despite overall trends and predictions showing a decline in higher education enrollment. A report released in June by credit ratings agency Fitch Ratings Group estimated that, due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, many colleges and universities will see enrollment declines of 5% to 20% this fall.

Photo: A Trine University student and her parents carry belongings into a residence hall during campus move-in over the weekend. Trine is experiencing record main campus enrollment this fall. (Dean Orewiler / Trine University)