MEMPHIS, Tenn. (localmemphis.com) – The University of Memphis is growing by size and in diversity and the University believes that’s a win for the college and the city.
Not only is the new class of freshman the biggest in Memphis history, it’s also seeing more students coming from out-of-state. From the previous school year to now, the university grew its out-of-state students by nearly 25% for both transfer and freshmen groups.
The university saw an increase of 70 students from 311 freshmen to 381 who came from other states, and 72 more from out-of-state transfers.
The 2018-19 school year saw a decrease in students overall, including out-of-state students. University Provost Thomas Nenon said the dip was from changes in admission that raised qualifications. Nenon said recent state changes and lower tuition allows them to become more competitive out-of-state.
As of recent years, the state of Tennessee has sent out more students than it has received.
Nenon said bringing in more students from out of Tennessee to Memphis is a benefit to the city’s workforce.
“Having students come to Tennessee and graduate from a Tennessee university, and many in the Memphis area, encourages students to come here and have a highly-skilled and educated workforce. So, we think it’s great for the university community. We think it’s great for the Memphis community,” he said.
Nenon said, by their statistics, 3/4 of their graduated undergrad students are likely to stay and work in Memphis afterward.
In the classroom, Nenon said more out-of-students has its benefits for classmates, by having a more diverse environment.
“We’re very, very diverse in almost every way expect historically geographically, so now in terms of race, ethnicity, religion, financial background of your family, this is probably one of the most diverse universities in the United States,” he said.
Nenon also said having more students from elsewhere keeps tuition lower for in-state students.