In 1970, WTAMU’s record enrollment stood at 7,935 students. As of the fall of 2012, that record has officially been broken as the current enrollment increased to 7,958 students. With this many students comes the need for new housing. The construction surrounding Founders Hall is set to open in the fall of 2013. Founders will be about 30,000 square feet bigger than Centennial.
Jon Behrens, senior director of Residential Living, oversaw the plans for Buff, Centennial and Founders Hall.
“With more students now, we are focusing on replacement halls to take over the older halls,” Behrens said.
One of the big differences between fall 2011 and fall 2012 is the increasing number of Hispanic students due to the Hispanic Serving Institution, something President O’Brien and many others have been striving for. If WT’s Hispanic rate gets to at least 25 percent, currently at 22 percent, the University will be eligible for more funding which will help all students.
Organizations such as G-Force, Talent Search, Upward Bound and Campos (Camp Migrate Program), are helping as well.
“[Campos] helps those kids who moved place to place growing up,” Rebecca Gonzales, an assistant director of Admissions, said, “They offer different scholarships and even tutoring to keep them on track.”
Some students who are of Hispanic decent don’t claim it, or simply forget.
“We have been attempting to survey every student so they can update their self-identification,” Dan Garcia, vice president for Enrollment Management said.
The Admissions office at WT has also made a point within the last couple of years to hire several bilingual recruiters to help communication with Spanish-speaking families go smoothly.
They have also printed material in Spanish to show how affordable WTAMU can be. On the platform of affordability, it has shown that many students have been coming from across the United States where their in-state tuitions are high. One of the larger increases was in 2012 when 44 students from Colorado enrolled compared to 23 in 2011.