The fastest-growing public university in Michigan, Ferris officials report there are 13,151 students enrolled systemwide. With 464 more students attending classes in spring 2010 over 2009, this translates into a 3.5 percent enrollment increase systemwide.
In particular, the university’s College of Allied Health Sciences has seen enrollment growth of nearly 12 percent over this time last year, said Dean of Enrollment Services Kristen Salomonson. The university also continues to see steady growth in online learning. There are 432 students enrolled in online coursework with student credit hours totaling 10,926, a nearly 19 percent increase in online student credit hours over 2009 figures. Online learning for students in CAHS accounts for 66 percent of student credit hour growth online.
“Strong growth in the College of Allied Health Sciences illustrates Ferris’ ability to remain nimble and offer degree programs students want and career opportunities with a positive occupational outlook,” Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs Fritz Erickson added.
Besides CAHS, other such college programs offering career opportunities for students is the new Bachelor of Science in Architecture and Sustainability. Another new degree, the Educational Doctorate in Community College Leadership, is helping prepare the next generation of community college leaders tackle an increasingly complex set of educational challenges.
Available beginning in fall 2010 and offered through Ferris State University’s College of Engineering Technology, the Architecture and Sustainability degree will include a blend of programming with an emphasis on sustainable design and practice. The Bachelor of Science in Architecture and Sustainability will include nine new courses in addition to utilizing existing coursework from the Associate in Applied Science degree in Architectural Technology, Bachelor of Science degree in Facilities Management, and Community Studies minor offered through the College of Arts and Sciences.
“This program will educate students on real-world issues of green building and provide them educational experiences that embrace sustainable building technology practices,” CET Dean Tom Oldfield said. “Momentum toward sustainable design is growing, and this degree provides students the educational background to provide meaningful solutions to altering the built environment.”
The Educational Doctorate in Community College Leadership combines courses from the colleges of Business, Education, Arts and Sciences, and Professional and Technological Studies. With a business core and interdisciplinary approach, this innovative degree will help assure that the future leaders of Michigan’s 28 community colleges are as well-prepared for those challenges as possible.
“The unique emphasis of this program fits nicely with Ferris State University’s mission of preparing the state’s citizens for successful careers that will shape the future of Michigan,” Erickson said. “Ferris is well-suited to offer this degree based upon its career-oriented, broad-based approach to education.”
Ferris State University expects to enroll its first class of students in the program beginning in summer 2010.
“Ferris is preparing more and more students for meaningful careers through our academic programming,” Salomonson added. “The quality of our students has never been better. What they are learning here prepares them for a lifetime of opportunity. As our graduation rate continues to climb, an increasing number of students with a degree from Ferris will be shaping our future.”
Besides its main campus in Big Rapids, Ferris offers degree programs in Grand Rapids through the College of Professional and Technological Studies, and Kendall College of Art and Design, and at more than 18 off-campus locations throughout Michigan.
Enrollment has remained steady at the university’s Big Rapids campus, with 9,172 students enrolled. There are 2,182 students enrolled through the university’s off-campus sites, with the largest site in Grand Rapids with an enrollment of 922 students.
Kendall College of Art and Design also saw an enrollment increase, with 1,365 students attending classes this spring.
“It is gratifying to see how much the programs we offer are resonating with students,” KCAD President Oliver Evans said. “With faculty who are professional artists and an atmosphere that promotes creativity, Kendall attracts some of the most talented young artists and designers around.”
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