STARKVILLE, Miss.--Mississippi State University surpassed the 20,000 student enrollment milestone with a 2011 fall semester headcount of 20,424, a 3.97 percent increase from last year.
The gain of 780 students from last year's 19,644 total shows MSU on the rise for the seventh consecutive year.
"Despite difficult economic times, we have worked hard to ensure that Mississippi State continues to offer the highest quality educational experience. Included in that experience is a friendly, welcoming and nurturing atmosphere that provides an environment for students to succeed," said MSU President Mark E. Keenum.
Among the enrollment gains, figures show increases in African American student enrollment, and the university continues to attract a high percentage of Mississippi students.
"We tell students that no matter their interest or career path, Mississippi State can help them get there. This all-time record enrollment figure, especially the high percentage of students from Mississippi, is a strong indication of the confidence those students have in our ability to help them become the future leaders of our state and nation," Keenum said.
Keenum has set an enrollment goal of 22,000 by 2015, and he said current enrollment shows the university is on track toward meeting that objective.
Fall enrollment includes 700 students at the university's Meridian campus.
The College of Arts and Sciences remains the largest academic unit with 5,241 students, followed by the College of Education with 3,816, the College of Engineering with 3,172, and the College of Business with 2,221.
Other current MSU enrollment information includes:
--A 20.7 percent African American enrollment, an 8.7 percent increase from last year.
--72.7 percent of MSU students are from Mississippi.
--51 percent of students are male, and 49 percent female.
--An average ACT score of 23.6.
For more information about Mississippi State University, see www.msstate.edu.