Home » Murray State sees significant enrollment bump in key categories

Murray State sees significant enrollment bump in key categories

Preliminary data indicates second straight year of increases in new freshmen, graduate and transfer students

MURRAY, Ky. — Enrollment data in several key categories reflect continued increases and positive momentum at Murray State University for the 2020-21 academic year, which began on Aug. 17.

Based on data as of Aug. 25, this year’s entering freshman class of 1,481 students reflects a significant increase of 4.2 percent from the fall 2019 freshman class. This marks the second straight year of freshman class growth; the fall 2019 class was up 7.7 percent from fall 2018 after being down nearly 9 percent from 2017. This marks the first time since 2011 and 2012 with consecutive years of freshman class growth at Murray State.

Below is a snapshot of the fall 2020 first-time freshman class:

  • Murray State freshmen hail from 28 states
  • Sixty-two percent of new freshman are from Kentucky and come from a total of 76 counties in the commonwealth
  • Within the University’s 18-county service region, this year’s class reflects a 11.6 percent increase from last year
  • The freshman class reflects a 6 percent increase in underrepresented minority students from last year
  • Ninety-eight percent of this year’s freshman class is entering the University with earned credit hours toward graduation
  • The average high school grade point average of this year’s freshman class is 3.8, an increase from last year
  • Nearly 9 percent of this year’s freshman class were named high school valedictorians

The number of new graduate students and new transfer students also reflect major increases from the previous fall at 7.6 percent and 20 percent, respectively.

Murray State continues to see an increase in student retention and progression towards graduation. The University’s first-to-second year retention rate of baccalaureate degree-seeking students is 80.8 percent, an increase of 1.5 percent from last year.

The official 2020-21 final enrollment report will be completed in October 2020.

Murray State President Dr. Bob Jackson

“I am very proud of our enrollment management team, administrators, faculty and staff who have worked very hard on our recruiting and retention efforts,” said Murray State President Dr. Bob Jackson. “Our work and focus on student recruiting, retention, scholarships and financial aid initiatives coupled with telling our story to students and families are making a difference. Most importantly, I am grateful for our students who have chosen a high-quality, nationally-ranked institution which is recognized as one of America’s best college values, to pursue their goals and dreams.”

“The hard work and collaboration of many individuals have led to these positive enrollment numbers,” said Vice President of Student Affairs and Enrollment Management Dr. Don Robertson. “More students continue to choose Murray State for a variety of important reasons, such as high-quality academics, a family-like campus life experience, the value of a Murray State education and caring faculty and staff who support students each step of the way.”

Murray State continues to reinforce its “high-quality, high-impact, best value” promise that has been recognized by multiple national publications. The University has been named a “Best Bang for the Buck” by Washington Monthly, one of “America’s Best Colleges” by Forbes for 12 straight years and a “Top-Tier University” by U.S. News & World Report for 29 consecutive years. In addition, the University has been recognized nationally for campus safety initiatives and within the past year, the city of Murray has been named one of the nation’s top 50 safest college towns.

Students interested in joining the Racer family for the fall 2021 semester can learn more, schedule a virtual or on-campus visit and apply for admission at admissions.murraystate.edu.