Enrollment Remains Strong; Diversity, Retention and Graduation Rates Increase to Record Levels

  • Baylor Line
    The Class of 2021 prepares to run the traditional Baylor Line for the first time at McLane Stadium. The Line is made up of 3,000+ BU freshmen, plus new transfers, who run on the field before kickoff, form a tunnel as the team runs on the field. (Baylor University)
  • Baylor seal
Sept. 8, 2017

Freshman class exceeds projections, sets all-time highs for diversity, selectivity

Media Contact: Lori Fogleman, 254-710-6275
Follow Lori on Twitter at @LoriBaylorU
Follow Baylor Media Communications on Twitter: @BaylorUMedia

WACO, Texas (Sept. 8, 2017) – Baylor University topped enrollment milestones for the diversity of its student body, enrolled a highly selective, high-achieving freshman class and advanced its retention and graduation rates to record levels, according to 12th class day statistics from Baylor’s Office of Institutional Research and Testing (IRT).

“This data provides another indication of Baylor’s strength and resilience, starting with our freshman class exceeding our enrollment projections. Not only are they exceptional students from all across the nation and world, this class is the most selective and most diverse class in Baylor’s history,” said Baylor President Linda A. Livingstone. “Overall, we have continued our positive momentum with record-high retention and graduation rates, a testament to the hard work and dedication of our outstanding faculty, staff and students.”

Baylor’s student body is the most diverse ever at the University, with overall minority enrollment up to 35.3 percent from 34.6 percent last year.

Baylor’s freshman enrollment of 3,320 students reveals that:

  • The acceptance rate of the freshman class was at a record-low 38.9 percent from a total of 37,084 applications, also the most ever.
  • Forty-four percent of this year’s freshmen were in the top 10 percent of their high school class.
  • Diversity among freshmen is at its highest level ever, with minority enrollment among first-year students at 37.8 percent, up from 34.2 percent last year.
  • More than 31 percent of the freshman class reported a legacy connection to Baylor.
  • Out-of-state freshman enrollment increased to a record 36.7 percent.
  • Freshmen represent 47 states, the District of Columbia and 36 countries. Other than Texas, the top five states for freshmen are California (249), Colorado (88), Illinois (68), Louisiana (55) and Oklahoma (53).

Another significant statistic involved the advancement in the University’s retention and graduation rates.

Over the past eight years, Baylor has improved its fall-to-fall retention among freshmen by nearly 9 percentage points. The latest retention rate from fall 2016 to fall 2017 increased to a record 89.5 percent.

The retention rate among all Baylor undergraduates from fall 2016 to fall 2017 is 91.2 percent, also the highest ever.

Baylor’s graduation rates continue to move forward at a record pace. Data from IRT shows:

  • the four-year graduation rate among the fall 2013 cohort at a record 62.9 percent
  • the five-year graduation rate for the fall 2012 cohort at a record 77.4 percent
  • the six-year graduation rate for the fall 2011 cohort at a record 76.6 percent

Baylor’s overall enrollment measured at 17,059 students. The University has enrolled 14,316 undergraduate students and 2,743 graduate and professional students in the Graduate School, George W. Truett Theological Seminary, Baylor Law School, Diana R. Garland School of Social Work, the online MBA program in the Hankamer School of Business and Baylor/U.S. Army affiliated degree programs.

ABOUT BAYLOR UNIVERSITY

Baylor University is a private Christian University and a nationally ranked research institution. The University provides a vibrant campus community for more than 16,000 students by blending interdisciplinary research with an international reputation for educational excellence and a faculty commitment to teaching and scholarship. Chartered in 1845 by the Republic of Texas through the efforts of Baptist pioneers, Baylor is the oldest continually operating University in Texas. Located in Waco, Baylor welcomes students from all 50 states and more than 80 countries to study a broad range of degrees among its 12 nationally recognized academic divisions.

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