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Mizzou's Fall 2017 Freshman Class Likely to be Smallest Since 2001

Columns at University of Missouri
Adam Procter
If UM Curators approve the increases, tuition could spike as much as 7.5 percent at the Columbia campus.

University of Missouri officials reported today that they expect to see another small freshman class this fall.

Based on initial enrollment deposits, which were due Monday, university officials are estimating an incoming freshman class of about 4,000 students this coming school year, down from 4,780 students in 2016 and just over 6,000 in 2015. Freshman enrollment hasn’t been as low as 4,000 students since 2001.

Among these numbers, though, the university suggested a silver lining in the form of 94% retention of students this year form fall to spring term. Though he declined to say what this rate had been in the past, university spokesperson Christian Basi suggested it’s cause for optimism.

"94 percent retention is very high," Basi said. "It indicates to us that students that are studying here are having a good experience and continue to believe that Mizzou will help them to achieve their career goals. We’re very pleased with that number."

These enrollment decreases come during a trend of college enrollment drops across the country and after controversial demonstrations over what students described as systemic racism in fall of 2015.

Nathan Lawrence is an editor, documentary filmmaker and data journalist.