BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Pursuit of an Indiana University education continues to grow within the state and across the globe, with the flagship Bloomington campus projecting a record-breaking class of incoming students for fall semester. IU Bloomington has already received 10,700 enrollment deposits and over 9,000 housing deposits from admitted students, and the campus is predicting a class that sets new milestones in academic quality, diversity and affordability.
"The Indiana University Bloomington campus is incredibly resilient," said IU Bloomington Provost and IU Executive Vice President Lauren Robel. "A lot of time, energy and strategy go into building each year's class, and this has been especially true over the past year as our community has worked tirelessly together to overcome the COVID-19 pandemic.
"We are extremely proud that our campus was able to stay safe and together throughout this past year, and that we have been able to remain a top choice for students from Indiana and beyond who are seeking an affordable, accessible world-class education."
Robel particularly commended Vice Provost for Enrollment Management David Johnson and Executive Vice Provost for Strategy, Budget and Finance M.A. "Venkat" Venkataramanan and their teams on their exceptional efforts at building a diverse, talented, high-achieving fall class during the pandemic. Robel, who is also the Val Nolan Professor of Law, will step down from her executive roles and return to the Maurer School of Law on July 1 to focus on her teaching and research.
Johnson said the campus received more than 46,000 applications this year -- the most ever, and a 5% increase over the previous year.
"When we compare the enrollment deposits and housing deposits with past enrollment trends, we can project a class of about 9,300 incoming freshmen this fall -- a 17% increase over the previous year's freshman enrollment and a 12% increase over the record class of 8,291 set in 2019," Johnson said.
"This demonstrates our students' enthusiasm for a more typical, post-pandemic college experience, coupled with the value and academic strengths of an IU degree. IU's continued focus on the health and safety of our community will allow a return to mostly normal operations this fall, and I cannot wait to welcome students back for a more engaging campus experience."
Venkataramanan said the campus is more than ready to support a larger-than-usual incoming class. In addition to adding a brand-new residence hall, Walnut Grove Center, the Bloomington campus will debut new and updated dining options, as well as expanded student services and academic resources.
"All of the pieces are in place to both reopen more widely following COVID-19 protocols and to welcome what we believe will be our largest class to date," he said. "As we make an IU education more possible for students from all backgrounds, academic units are gearing up with increased faculty and staff to meet the demands for fall 2021."
Other key milestones of interest for the incoming class include:
- Two new academic buildings to support increasingly popular paths of study in fields that are of global importance. The Luddy Center for Artificial Intelligence -- dedicated June 23 and led by the Luddy School of Informatics, Computing and Engineering -- will focus on multidisciplinary research in advanced AI and machine-learning applications. The Health Sciences Building in the new Regional Academic Health Center will house the IU School of Medicine, School of Nursing, Department of Speech, Language and Hearing Sciences, and School of Social Work. Students will learn from and work directly with health care professionals and peers in an interdisciplinary setting that increases collaboration opportunities between schools and programs.
- Several new strategies to support the goals of interested students, including the adoption of a test-optional admissions policy. In this inaugural year, more than 40 percent of admitted students chose to not report test scores.
- A new scholarship approach that supported a record number of incoming students. IU Academic Scholarship offers for fall 2021 were up 50 percent at IU Bloomington, while accepted scholarship offers are currently up 56 percent over 2020. Both figures represent a record for the campus.
- A projected 19 percent increase in Pell Grant-eligible students, with about 1,650 in the beginner cohort. IU is committed to becoming more accessible to excellent students. The revised admissions and scholarship process this year will result in three times as many incoming freshmen who qualified for both Pell Grants and IU Academic Scholarships, compared to last year. Federal Pell Grants are awarded to undergraduate students demonstrating exceptional financial need.
- A record level of diverse student enrollment. The campus expects to welcome about 1,600 underrepresented students in this fall's freshman class -- a more than 5% increase over last year. The number of underrepresented beginner students who have accepted an IU Academic Scholarship has more than doubled in the past year.
Fall-semester classes at IU Bloomington begin Aug. 23. Official enrollment figures will be compiled and shared near the beginning of the fall semester.