The University of North Carolina at Pembroke has set new enrollment records for the fourth straight year, Chancellor Allen C. Meadors announced to the Board of Trustees during their quarterly meeting on September 5.
As Chancellor Meadors spoke Friday afternoon, students were moving into the University's new 213-bed residence hall. One hundred and ninety-four students moved into the privately-financed facility from two motels in Lumberton where they had been temporarily housed since August 23 because of rain delays.
Total enrollment is 4,754 up 7.3 percent from last year and up 58 percent from 1999. Freshmen enrollment set a new record of 809 and transfer student set another record at 460.
Enrollment numbers for fall 2003 will not become official for another week but will not vary much from Friday's estimates, Chancellor Meadors said.
The number of Native Americans enrolled at UNCP set an all-time record of 957. African American student enrollment also set a record with 1,019.
"Native American enrollment is up 39 percent in four years despite four percent drop in Native American high school graduates," Chancellor Meadors said. "This is nothing short of amazing and miraculous."
Chancellor Meadors said the biggest single change in the character of the University is the number of students living on campus, which has increased by 97 percent in four years.
"A university is truly a good neighbor," Chancellor Meadors said. "Besides bringing in more than 700 new residents to our community, we have 200 more employees now than we had in 1999."
There are currently construction projects, valued at $41 million, underway at UNCP, Chancellor Meadors said. The owners of the new residence hall have agreed to construct two more buildings with 144 new beds for next year.
"Your university has done some incredible things over the past four years, and you haven't seen anything yet," Chancellor Meadors said.
In other business, the Board of Trustees authorized the University to negotiate the purchase of land across 3rd Street in front of the main entrance.
Two faculty hiring policies were amended and forwarded to the UNC Board of Governors for their approval. New tenure-track faculty will have two-year contracts instead of one-year deals, and some faculty may be granted tenure immediately when it is merited.
Both new policies put UNCP in a better position to attract talented faculty and academic administrators.