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UA welcomes record number of in-state freshmen to ‘Alabama Experience’

More students from within the state and across the country were called to the “Alabama Experience” this fall at the University of Alabama than ever before. 

Official enrollment data reports a headcount of 39,623 students.

That total includes 3,184 freshmen representing every county. It is the largest number of in-state freshmen since 2010 and the fifth consecutive year with an increase in in-state enrollment. 

This year’s incoming class continues to be academically talented, with 43.4% boasting a 4.0 high school GPA, a record average high school GPA of 3.87, and 300 National Merit Scholars. 

RELATED: Bell: University of Alabama’s ‘fundamental’ mission is student success

“Students – and their parents – are not only drawn to UA’s academic excellence but to what we refer to as the ‘Alabama Experience’,” said UA President Stuart Bell. “With over 600 student organizations, experiential learning opportunities like our remarkable entrepreneurship program, and boundless undergraduate and graduate research opportunities, students choose The University of Alabama to become well-rounded global citizens, ready to make a difference.”

In-state students are growing faster than the state’s population, increasing 1.5% overall and 6.6% among first-time undergraduates. 

The university said it has a record enrollment of 9,342 ethnic and racial minority students, a 9.4% increase from 2022, and likely includes the highest number of under-represented minority students enrolled at any university in the state. This includes an all-time high of 4,579 Black students and 2,610 Hispanic students. 

The University of Alabama System Board of Trustees froze in-state tuition for the 2023-24 academic year. Prior to the 2022-2023 school year, when tuition was increased marginally to account for inflation, in-state students did not see an increase for five consecutive years. 

RELATED: UA System: No tuition increase for in-state students

“We’re proud of our enrollment numbers – for all the new students, but also for those we are helping to thrive here and persist through graduation,” Bell said. “UA is a First-Generation Forward institution, which means we have dedicated programs and resources designed to support those who are the first in their families to go to college.”

With students from all 67 counties, all 50 states, the District of Columbia and 92 countries, UA is educating and graduating more students than any university in the state.

According to its latest impact report, UA has a $2.8 billion economic impact on the state, spanning all 67 counties. 

UA characterizes their enrollment growth as a deliberate aspect of a broader mission to meet the state’s workforce needs: Each year, UA awards around 9,000 degrees and, of the graduates that may be tracked since 2015, 52% remain in Alabama. 

Grayson Everett is a staff writer for Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @Grayson270

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