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Spring 2023 enrollment marks continued growth for ETBU

January 26, 2023

East Texas Baptist University’s Spring 2023 enrollment surpassed the Spring 2022 enrollment record, with 1,560 new and returning Tigers enrolled for classes in January 2023. The 4.35% increase over last year’s record spring enrollment marks the first time Spring semester enrollment is over 1,500.

“This is a testament to the time, energy, and effort of our faculty and staff in their vital role in the Kingdom mission of East Texas Baptist,” ETBU President J. Blair Blackburn said. “We pray earnestly for the students the Lord has called to this Hill and praise Him for his provisions spiritually, financially, and physically for all who have returned to our campus this Spring.”

ETBU celebrated the highest record student enrollment in the University’s 110-year history with a Fall 2022 enrollment of 1,771 students. During the fall commencement ceremony, ETBU presented 162 graduates with degrees. The previous high enrollment mark for a spring semester came in 2022, with 1,495 students enrolled at ETBU.

Graduate enrollment for Spring 2023 marks the highest in University history, up 23.3% from a year ago. The University saw continued growth in adult education enrollment as the University awaits the opening of Synergy Park. This initiative will build another bridge to workforce readiness and career advancement for business development and an academic training center in downtown Marshall.

“The record number enrollment in graduate programs and adult education, in addition to strong retention of returning students from a historical Fall 2022 enrollment, is reflected in this spring enrollment,” ETBU Vice President for Enrollment Jeremy Johnston said.

Undergraduate enrollment grew by 2.2% marking the highest spring term undergraduate enrollment in the University’s history. Through the dedicated work of the faculty and staff, full-time undergraduate enrollment increased by 2.5%.

Dual enrollment surged by 10.7 percent from spring 2022, marking the highest dual enrollment total in University history for a spring term. As ETBU partners with Marshall, Elysian Fields, Waskom, and other Christian educational partners to provide local high school students the opportunity to begin their post-secondary education while completing their high school education.

“Ten years ago, when we started these graduate programs, I am not sure any of us imagine we would have nearly 200 enrolled in a spring semester,” ETBU Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs Dr. Thomas Sanders said. “God has given us an incredible opportunity to provide students with a graduate degree that further prepares them professionally for their calling. We are so appreciative of our deans and graduate faculty who make this possible. 

Fall to spring returning student retention set the highest in University history, with 90% of students obtained from the Fall 2022 term. Through the dedicated work of many faculty and staff, freshman cohort retention was up two percent, as ETBU retained 87% of freshmen. It is the highest freshman cohort retention since 2015 which was also 87%. The University saw its highest transfer cohort retention since 2000, with 85% retention.

The semester is already off to an exciting start, with students looking forward to many exciting activities throughout the spring, including Black History Month, Connexus, spring Tiger Athletics, and the ETBU School of Communication and Performing Arts’ productions of West of Eden and Working: The Musical.

“With a mission to prepare graduates to be Christian servant leaders, strong academic offerings, and a vibrant student life, ETBU is a place to call home for students looking for a Christ-centered education,” Johnston said.

Those interested in attending East Texas Baptist University can attend the next Preview Day on February 20, or Tiger Day on March 25. Find more information on campus visits available at