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Tennessee Wesleyan University Experiences Enrollment Increases Across the Board

As campus returned to normal after summer break, there was a noticeable difference for returning students, faculty and staff – it felt just a little fuller. The reason? Record enrollment.

1,142 students (to be exact) fill the dining hall, sidewalks and classrooms for a 12.5 percent increase over fall 2018 enrollment. TWU welcomed more than 450 new students at the Athens campus and the Knoxville, Cleveland and Madisonville instructional sites. “Campus is filled with energy this year. There is a sense of excitement, hope and pride from all of our students and that is contagious around campus,” remarks President Dr. Harley Knowles.

Health professions continues expected growth

New healthcare programs provide additional boosts in enrollment from the Master of Occupational Therapy program and the newly acquired dental hygiene program. Combined, the programs account for 61 new students in Knoxville and Madisonville. These programs join a strong nursing program that also saw a 25 percent increase between the traditional bachelor program and the online RN to BSN.

Support equals success

In addition to new students and new programs, the University reached another milestone with retention this year. 70 percent of freshmen returned for their second year. This 10 percent increase over the past six years is a direct reflection of the dedicated support efforts led by the student success team. Bolstered by the Title III Grant received last fall, this team will continue to implement new ways to help students across the University. Director of Student Success, Sara Denny believes support services are the best they’ve ever been at TWU. “We’ve added additional success coaches this summer and are now housed within the new Mosher Success Center providing students direct access to career counseling, tutoring referrals and academic guidance. This has become a one-stop-shop for students, so they feel confident as they prepare for their next step after Wesleyan.”

Fall 2019 by the numbers

  • 1,142 total enrollment
  • 1,067 undergraduate enrollment
  • 452 new undergraduate students
  • 50% increase in MBA enrollment
  • 171 total nursing enrollment
  • 371 students living on campus
  • 59% female, 41% male – new undergraduate students
  • 39% first-generation (undergraduate only)
  • 22 average ACT Composite (new freshmen only)
  • 3.43 average GPA (new freshmen only)
  • 99% receive institutional aid (new students only)
  • $9,500 average merit scholarship award

Top Academic Programs for New Cohorts

  • Nursing/Pre-nursing
  • Business
  • Health & Human Performance
  • Education
  • Dental Hygiene
  • Criminal Justice

TWU continues to be recognized as a top school in the region. Fall is also rankings seasons in the higher education community, and once again, Tennessee Wesleyan finds itself on lists like College Consensus, RN Careers and U.S. News & World Report. These rankings are reiterating what students, alumni, faculty and staff already know – it’s great to be a TWU Bulldog!