Overall enrollment at Mississippi’s public universities dropped by 1.6% this year, according to data released by the Mississippi Institutions of Higher Learning on Wednesday.

Statewide enrollment for fall 2019 is 77,896 compared to 79,193 in fall 2018.

Delta State University, Mississippi State University and Mississippi University for Women (The W) are the only three public universities to see an increase this year.

Delta State enrollment increased by 1.2%, Mississippi State by 1.1% and The W by 3.8%. With 2,813 students, this is The W’s second highest fall enrollment over the past 10 years.

“We are proud that more students are choosing The W,” President Nora Miller said. “Enrollment is up in every class – freshman through graduate level. In addition to attracting more new students, our focus on student success is reflected in better retention and graduation of our students.”

Alcorn State University, Jackson State University, Mississippi Valley State University, the University of Mississippi and the University of Southern Mississippi all saw decreases in enrollment.

Mississippi Valley State had the largest decline in percentage of students enrolled. It dropped from 2,285 to 2,147 – a 6% decline, but a decrease of only 138 students.

Meanwhile, the University of Mississippi had the most significant drop in the number of students enrolled.

The university has 22,273 students enrolled this year compared to 23,090 in fall 2018 – a difference of 817 students, which is 3.5%. This is the third year in a row that enrollment at the university has declined.

That enrollment number includes 2,852 students at the University of Mississippi Medical Center in Jackson. While enrollment was down for the university as a whole, enrollment at the medical center rose by 1.3%.

“We recognize that it is a challenging environment to recruit students because of declining numbers of college and university students nationally, and we are addressing this challenge through additional investments in technology, marketing and recruiting,” UM Chancellor Glenn Boyce said in a statement.

blake.alsup@journalinc.com

Twitter: @AlsupTheWriter

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