News Local/State

NIU Sees Freshman Enrollment Increase For The First Time In Years

NIU's Altgeld Hall.

NIU's Altgeld Hall. Susan Stephens/WNIJ

There’s a three percent increase in freshman enrollment at Northern Illinois University this year.

NIU is one of the few schools outside of the University of Illinois system seeing any enrollment hike after the state’s budget impasse, according to NIU spokesman Joe King.

Eastern Illinois University’s freshman enrollment dropped 14 percent from last year. Southern Illinois University-Carbondale reported theirs is down 19 percent.

King says this is the first time NIU has had that kind of increase in six years.

“Just for perspective, a year ago we were down 20 percent there,” King said. He says the hike is despite Illinois being the number one exporter of college students to other states.

“This is a nice little turnaround, and it comes at a time when recruiting in the state of Illinois was very difficult,” King said.

King says there was a five percent decrease in total enrollment, which has been the case for the last few years. He says that’s due to larger graduating classes leaving when smaller classes come in.

King says that trend may continue. 


Illinois Public Universities - Fall 2017 Enrollment