Dear Campus Community:
Welcome back! I hope the summer months were enjoyable and productive. As we move into a new academic year, I am pleased to share some good news. For the first time in a number of years, our University will be growing. Although final numbers are not official until the 14th class day, it is estimated that we will grow somewhere between 2-3% overall. Last year we established annual growth targets of 2%, and it appears that we will exceed that for the 2016-2017 academic year. This year's freshman class will likely set a record. Last Friday we had over 2,700 new freshman enrolled, an increase of 30% over last year's class. As students settle in during the first week, we expect the final number to be somewhere between 25% -30% year over year growth, a record for the University of Memphis. Similarly, growth in total new students (i.e. transfers + freshman) will approach 4000, the largest we have seen in quite a while. As of today, the growth in total new students is 24% over last year. Overall growth of 2-3% is particularly impressive given our significant improvement in graduation numbers over the past three years. As shared previously, we graduated over 800 students more in the past three years relative to the previous three year average, with marked improvement in our overall graduation rate. Of particular importance, our new incoming students are the most academically qualified to date, both with respect to mean ACT scores and high school GPA.
I wish you the best for the new academic year and want to say thank you for your hard work and dedication to our students, our campus community and the City of Memphis. Go Tigers!
M. David Rudd
President | Distinguished University Professor