The top official at Kansas University was relieved today to learn spring semester enrollment on KU's campuses was virtually unchanged from a year ago.
Overall enrollment on all KU campuses was 27,333 as of the 20th day of classes, the day the official enrollment count is taken for state budget purposes. That's two fewer students than KU had last spring.
KU Chancellor Gene Budig said he was encouraged by the enrollment trend. KU's budget couldn't handle an enrollment surge right now, he said.
"Stability in enrollment has given the University of Kansas a chance to plan more effectively," he said. "It must remain in place, given the existing resource base."
Total enrollment had increased the two previous spring terms by 153 in 1991 and 378 in 1990.
Enrollment in courses administered from KU's main campus in Lawrence was 24,893, a decline of 51.
THE DECLINE can be attributed to a drop of 94 students in courses taught at off-campus locations which are included in the Lawrence figure. On-campus enrollment increased 43 to 23,655.
At the KU Medical Center in Kansas City, Kan., enrollment this spring climbed by 49 to 2,440. KUMC enrollment has increased every year since 1988.
On the Lawrence campus, the trend toward enrolling more junior and senior students continued this semester. The shift reflects an increase in the number of students transferring from community colleges, KU officials said.
Freshman enrollment declined by 302 to 3,785. That's the fourth consecutive year in which the number of first-year students has fallen. Sophomore enrollment fell for the third straight year, dropping 74 to 3,859.
Enrollment by juniors increased 73 to 4,191 and the tally for seniors climbed 78 to 5,622.
The largest enrollment increase occurred in the graduate school. Enrollment was 6,259, compared with 5,980 last spring. That's an increase of 279 students. Graduate school enrollment has risen 750 students in four years.
THE LARGEST enrollment decline was in the School of Engineering. The total fell by 151 to 1,312. An enrollment management strategy has curtailed enrollment in each of the past five years. In 1988, there were 343 more engineering students.
Academic schools whose enrollments rose this spring were: law, up 42 to 540; education, up 38 to 1,012; nursing up 35 to 275; pharmacy, up 11 to 278; allied health, up 11 to 258; and fine arts, up 10 to 1,094.
Academic units with lower enrollments were: College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, down 107 to 12,436; social welfare, down 48 to 510; journalism, down 35 to 847; business, down 31 to 795; architecture, down 28 to 651; and medicine, down 27 to 1,358.
A demographic breakdown of spring semester enrollment showed more women than men enrolled at KU. Enrollment of women increased by 74 to 13,931; enrollment by men decreased 76 to 13,402.
KU also has more Kansas residents than it had last spring. This semester, the in-state total grew nine to 18,173 and the out-of-state total fell 11 to 9,160.