SBHE receives enrollment census report

SBHE receives enrollment census report

The North Dakota State Board of Higher Education heard an important update of the North Dakota University System’s enrollment status during its meeting on Oct. 26. Gathering via Teams software, the Board listened to a report prepared by Dr. Jen Weber, NDUS Director of Institutional Research.

According to Weber, the NDUS is seeing an upward trend in post-bachelor student cohorts, high school students taking college coursework; part-time students; online course scheduled credits; and systemwide headcount, full-time equivalencies (FTE), and scheduled credit hours.

“This is the largest cohort of high school students we’ve seen,” Weber said. “In headcount, FTE and credit hours, we’re seeing an uptick in all of them. That’s a positive.”

Areas that are trending downward include: incoming freshmen cohorts, high school graduates, full-time students, traditional course scheduled credits, and Minnesota-North Dakota reciprocity.

Chancellor Mark Hagerott said the NDUS has seen a systemwide enrollment drop of about 10% since 2011. “Hopefully, we are bottoming out,” he said. “We expect enrollment to go up in upcoming years.”

The Fall 2023 census figures for the NDUS are:

  • 44,227 by headcount
  • 33,422 by FTE
  • 490,643 scheduled credit hours

Undergraduate student headcount (top five states):

  • 20,498 – North Dakota
  • 8,803 – Minnesota
  • 646 – Montana
  • 533 – California
  • 373 – Texas

Graduate student headcount (top five states):

  • 3,045 – North Dakota
  • 1,286 – Minnesota
  • 123 – California
  • 103 – South Dakota
  • 94 – Texas

Hagerott expressed optimism for the future, noting North Dakota is listed as a partner for the recently announced Pacific Northwest Hydrogen Hub that is planned for Montana. The hub is one of seven proposed regional hubs and is part of the $8 billion nationwide Regional Clean Hydrogen Hubs Program.

“The hub has been called epic and transformative for our region,” Hagerott said. “Also, with students wanting more online course offerings and flexibility, we have an incredible wealth of opportunities in the years ahead.”

In other business, the Board discussed Tik Tok waivers requested by marketing personnel at Dickinson State University and North Dakota State College of Science who want to use the social media app as a recruitment tool. Because of concerns about data security, the Board had earlier banned Tik Tok on NDUS networks and computer equipment. The matter was referred to the Research and Governance Committee for review and consideration.

In addition, the Board referred two items to the Budget Finance Committee. They include: UND seeking approval to sell a parcel of land and BSC seeking approval to sell bonds to help finance a $40 million Multipurpose Academic/Athletic Center.

The Board also gave first reading and waived second reading to HR10, Retirement; Policy 707, Severance Pay; and 400 Series Policies.

First reading was given to 600 Series Policies, Personnel, and 305.1; Institution President Authority and Responsibilities: Contract Terms; SBHE Policy 604.1, Performance Evaluations Presidents; and 600 Series Policies 610, Oath for Teachers and 611.9, Selection of Textbooks and Other Curricular Materials.

Some policies were sent to the Research and Governance Committee for input, including 600 Series Policies, 611.2 Employee Responsibility and Activities: Intellectual Property; 611.6 Confidential Proprietary Information; and 611.8 Employee Responsibility and Activities: Research on Human Subjects, and SBHE Policy 604.2, Performance Evaluations Chancellor.

The Board will meet again on Dec. 7.