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KU Class of 2017 sets records for academics, diversity

Fri, 09/27/2013

LAWRENCE – The University of Kansas Class of 2017 set records for academic talent and diversity, according to enrollment figures announced today.

There were exactly 4,000 students in the freshman class, up 6.1 percent from last year’s figure of 3,771, marking the second consecutive year the freshman class has grown.

The average freshman ACT score was 25.3, up two-tenths of a point from last year’s average, which itself was a record and the highest of any public university in Kansas. More than one-fifth, 21.8 percent, are minority students, up from 21.3 percent last year.

“Students are recognizing the advantages of studying at a flagship research university and all the opportunities that come with being a Jayhawk. That so many top scholars are choosing KU is a testament to the high quality of our academic programs, as well as to our revitalized recruitment efforts,” said Chancellor Bernadette Gray-Little.

“The goal now will be to help our new Jayhawks be successful in their first year, so that they can stay on track to graduate on time,” she said.

Increasing the percentage of students who successfully earn their degrees is a priority of KU’s Bold Aspirations strategic plan. This year’s freshman class is the first to take the KU Core Curriculum, which can be fulfilled through both classes and experiences such as undergraduate research, study abroad and service learning. The size of the Honors Program was increased by 45 percent this year to accommodate the influx of student scholars, and first-year experiences have been created to help students make the transition to college.

Year-to-year overall enrollment declined by 155 students to 27,784 due to a decline in the number of students seeking master’s degrees. Undergraduate enrollment and doctoral enrollment both grew slightly.

“There is growing competition when it comes to master’s degree programs. We’re responding to that challenge by creating more flexible offerings and through entirely online programs such as the special education master’s degree launched earlier this month,” said Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor Jeffrey Vitter.

Vitter also said the university is making changes to how graduate students at all levels are recruited, as well as working to increase the amount of funding that can be offered, particularly for doctoral students. Enhancing doctoral education is another priority of Bold Aspirations.

International enrollment at the graduate and undergraduate level increased to a record 2,431 students, with that growth largely attributable to new partnerships and exchange programs with universities and organizations around the world.

For freshmen entering college in fall 2014, the deadline to apply for renewable scholarships is Nov. 1 at admissions.ku.edu.



David Roediger’s award-winning research and writing has already transformed how historians view the growth of social freedoms in America though the intersection of race, class, ethnicity, and labor. Now Roediger, as KU’s first Foundation Distinguished Professor of History (http://bit.ly/1AbAqYw), will continue to break new ground in those fields as he works with KU’s departments of American Studies and History. Roediger likes to study historical flash points — where one particular change brings a cascade of wider cultural changes. His latest book, “Seizing Freedom, Slave Emancipation and Liberty for All,” makes the point that as slaves began freeing themselves across the South during the Civil War, their emancipation inspired and ignited other cultural movements for freedom — such as the women’s movement for suffrage and the labor movement for better working conditions and an eight-hour day. Understanding the individual stories of average people who wanted to make their lives better, including slaves or factory workers, are important to understanding the wider political movements and elections, Roediger said. “It's tempting to think that all the important political questions have been decided,” he said, “but actually people are constantly thinking about what freedom would mean for them.” Tags: #KUcommunities #CivilRights #History American Studies at KU
Turning rural America healthy: Christie Befort uses $10 million award. http://t.co/rrFjFtHbYT #KUcommunities http://t.co/Bsuek4k9QC
Lauded race and class historian becomes KU Foundation Professor David Roediger’s award-winning research and writing has already transformed how historians view the growth of social freedoms in America though the intersection of race, class, ethnicity, and labor. Now Roediger, as KU’s first Foundation Distinguished Professor of History (http://bit.ly/1AbAqYw), will continue to break new ground in those fields as he leads KU’s departments of American Studies and History. Roediger likes to study historical flash points — where one particular change brings a cascade of wider cultural changes. His latest book, “Seizing Freedom, Slave Emancipation and Liberty for All,” makes the point that as slaves began freeing themselves across the South during the Civil War, their emancipation inspired and ignited other cultural movements for freedom — such as the women’s movement for suffrage and the labor movement for better working conditions and an eight-hour day. Understanding the individual stories of average people who wanted to make their lives better, including slaves or factory workers, is important to understanding the wider political movements and elections, Roediger said. “It's tempting to think that all the important political questions have been decided,” he said, “but actually people are constantly thinking about what freedom would mean for them.”


One of 34 U.S. public institutions in the prestigious Association of American Universities
26 prestigious Rhodes Scholars — more than all other Kansas colleges combined
Nearly $290 million in financial aid annually
46 nationally ranked graduate programs.
—U.S. News & World Report
Top 50 nationwide for size of library collection.
—ALA
23rd nationwide for service to veterans —"Best for Vets," Military Times