SHIPPENSBURG, Pa. (WHTM) — Shippensburg University announced its fall 2022 enrollment numbers, reporting an increase in first-time college students.

According to a press release from Shippensburg University, there has been an increase of 78 students enrolling for their first year. There are 5,164 students currently enrolled at Shippensburg University in undergraduate and graduate programs for the fall of 2022.

The average GPA of new students went up as well, going from 3.21 to 3.31.

Shippensburg University saw an increase in growth in several counties. The counties include Cumberland (24% increase), York (34% increase), Lancaster (80% increase), Adams (33% increase), and Schuylkill (23% increase) counties.

The number of students returning for a second year went up by 1% and the four-year graduation rate for first-time college students went up by 5.2%. Shippensburg University launched the UNIV101 First Year Experience course back in 2018, which focused on helping students transition to college life and connecting them to faculty. Shippensburg University attributes its growth rates to this program.

“This year’s enrollment numbers are heading in the direction we’ve hoped to see, despite continued shifts in the current higher education landscape and the ongoing recovery from the COVID pandemic. The metrics we see are strong, early indicators that our enrollment is stabilizing in both recruitment and retention. I’m proud of the work of our enrollment management team at Ship and hopeful these trends will continue as we remain dedicated to serving our region and beyond,” said Dr. Charles E. Patterson, president of Shippensburg University. 

The honors college, Wood Honors College, saw a total of 58 new students enroll for this fall. This is a record high number, the university says. Factors such as high school GPA, the academic rigor of high school coursework, application essays, and evidence of leadership and service are considered for admission into the program.