Arkansas Tech Becomes Third-Largest University in State

As of this morning, Arkansas Tech University officials have reported a preliminary 11th day enrollment of 12,003 students for the fall 2014 semester on Friday. This shows enrollment at the school increased 5.6 percent over fall of 2013, and, with the increase, Arkansas Tech has now surpassed the University of Arkansas at Little Rock and the University of Central Arkansas to become the third-largest institution of higher learning in the Natural State.   Only the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville and Arkansas State University in Jonesboro have larger enrollments among Arkansas colleges and universities.

“Today marks a significant milestone in the history of Arkansas Tech University,” said Dr. Robin E. Bowen, who took office as the 12th president of Arkansas Tech on July 1. “The fact that in one decade we have grown from the sixth-largest university in our state to become one of the three largest is a testament to the quality of our academic programs and our institutional commitment to serve a diverse community of learners. This achievement is a point of pride for each member of the Arkansas Tech family.”

Enrollment at Arkansas Tech has increased by 183 percent since 1997. This fall marks the 16th consecutive year that Arkansas Tech has established a new institutional record for largest enrollment.

The growth in fall 2014 is bolstered by the largest freshman class in Arkansas Tech history. There are 1,684 incoming freshmen on the main campus of Arkansas Tech in Russellville this fall. The previous record for largest Arkansas Tech main campus freshman class was 1,572 students, which was established in fall 2011.

Much of the growth in freshman enrollment came from Pulaski County and Benton County. The number of Arkansas Tech freshmen from those two counties increased by 76.9 percent from fall 2013 to fall 2014, going from a combined count of 143 freshmen one year ago to 253 freshmen from Pulaski and Benton counties this fall.

Freshman enrollment at Arkansas Tech main campus for fall 2014 increased 17.5 percent over fall 2013, when 1,433 incoming freshmen enrolled.

The Arkansas Tech Class of 2018 achieved a high school grade point average of 3.24 and an average ACT score of 21.88. This fall marks the 20th consecutive year that the Arkansas Tech freshman class has beaten the national and state averages on the ACT exam.

Among the 1,684 freshmen at Arkansas Tech in Russellville, 844 (50.1 percent) are female and 840 (49.9 percent) are male.

When the first-time students from Arkansas Tech-Ozark Campus are included in the count, there are 1,951 freshmen enrolled at Arkansas Tech this fall.

Friday’s enrollment announcement by Arkansas Tech comes on the heels of the release of the “Almanac of Higher Education 2014” by The Chronicle of Higher Education. The almanac reported that Arkansas Tech is among the 10 fastest-growing master’s degree-granting universities in the United States for a second consecutive year.

The “Almanac of Higher Education 2014” showed that enrollment at Arkansas Tech increased by 87 percent from 2002-2012, making it the fastest-growing university in Arkansas for that time frame.

Growth at Arkansas Tech has included many enrollment milestones along the way. Arkansas Tech exceeded 5,000 students for the first time in 2000; 6,000 students in 2003; 7,000 students in 2006; 8,000 students in 2009; 9,000 students in 2010; 10,000 students in 2011; 11,000 students in 2013; and now 12,000 students in 2014.

Other numbers of note from the fall 2014 enrollment at Arkansas Tech:

*included in the overall enrollment number are 2,172 individuals studying through Arkansas Tech-Ozark Campus, which has seen its enrollment increase by 622 percent since joining Arkansas Tech in 2003;

*there are 904 graduate students at Arkansas Tech in fall 2014, the highest such count in institution history;

*53.9 percent of Arkansas Tech freshmen this fall self-reported as first-generation college students;

*students from minority groups represent 22.4 percent of the Arkansas Tech student body, compared to 10 percent of the student body in 2004;

*Arkansas Tech enrolled 450 international students representing 33 foreign countries for the fall 2014 semester;

*and among the 1,951 freshmen at Arkansas Tech, 1,831 (93.8 percent) are from the State of Arkansas.

For more information about Arkansas Tech University, visit the school’s website here.