Illinois Wesleyan University's fall enrollment numbers show a 17.4% decrease in new students from 2018.
The private university reports an incoming class of 446, down from last year's 540 new students. That year also marked a 30% increase in new students from 2017 in which the university reported 416 new students.
Last year, the university increased its accessible scholarship dollars. Former university President Eric Jensen told WGLT in 2018 that those extra scholarship dollars came from the McLean County Scholarship program and more than $700,000 in donations from the local community. University spokesperson John Twork said in an email that the university's financial aid program has not changed for 2019 and "continues to positively impact our local, new-student enrollment."
Local enrollment remained consistent with 37 new students from McLean County reported both this year and in 2018.
IWU's current numbers also indicate its new class is its second most diverse on record, with 27% of students identifying as students of color. Last year was the university's most diverse class at 29%.
“Our incoming students will further enhance the diverse and academically strong University community,” IWU Interim President Georgia Nugent said in a release. “I am pleased by Illinois Wesleyan’s ability to consistently attract high caliber students, both locally and from around the globe, who will flourish through mentorship and collaboration with our remarkable faculty and staff.”
The university's total enrollment is 1,636. That's down 3% from last year and 1% from 2017.
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