14 percent increase seen in out-of-state students

By Nathaniel Lash

This year’s freshman class has seen a 14 percent increase in out-of-state students, according to “a report”:http://www.dmi.illinois.edu/stuenr/index.asp#new released by the University on Saturday.

The class of 2015 sports 7,255 students, 319 more than last year’s freshman class. But the 1,629 out-of-state freshmen shows an increase in 201 students from the previous year.

Incoming out-of-state undergraduates will pay more than $25,000 in tuition, while in-state students pay roughly $11,000 for their tuition. Out-of-state tuition from this freshman class will supply the University with more than $42 million, over 40 percent of the whole class’s tuition.

“We just admit who’s the most qualified,” said Gregg Perry, associate director of undergraduate admissions.

He said programs seeking out-of-state students, including international students, are based on a desire for greater campus diversity. He also said the University’s prestige, both nationally and internationally, has been increasing the number of out-of-state applicants. A majority of these out-of-state students hail from overseas, most of whom are from China, India and South Korea.

This year marked a record for “University applicants”:https://www.dailyillini.com/index.php/article/2011/05/4dc18d97c1a7a with 26,000 total, more than 8,000 of which were from outside of Illinois, Perry said. This body of out-of-state students shows self-selection bias, Perry said, based on the higher likelihood that the majority of students applying from outside of the state are better qualified.

“In general, (out-of-state applicants) tend to have higher academic credentials,” Perry said.

But most out-of-state students admitted don’t end up attending. As few as one out-of-state student attend per every ten admitted, a rate much lower than in-state residents, who come to the University well over 50 percent of the time once admitted.

In April, the “General Assembly directed”:https://www.dailyillini.com/index.php/article/2011/04/study_to_review_uis_outofstate_tuition_rates the Illinois Board of Higher Education to produce a report comparing the out-of-state costs to those at the flagship universities in neighboring states. The House resolution expressed concerns that the University’s tuition rates are “considerably lower than that at flagship institutions in neighboring states.” But the board’s findings, released June 30, showed the contrary.

“Comparing UIUC with the two flagships with similar enrollments, UIUC seems to be [on] par with the rates at Indiana University-Bloomington and the University of Wisconsin-Madison,” said the board in the report.

The Illinois Board of Higher Education reported that Wisconsin’s Madison campus has 37 percent out-of-state students and the Bloomington campus of Indiana University has 31 percent. Though not asked to do so by the House resolution, the board also stated in its report that the University has the third-lowest appropriation of state funds among the flagship campuses in neighboring states.

Perry also said the University is still on the “low end of the Big Ten” regarding non-resident numbers. The University of Michigan reported that its incoming freshman class last fall was more than 51 percent non-Michigan residents and the University of Iowa showed about 49 percent of their students coming from outside of its home state.

While the number of out-of-state students at the University has doubled over the last five years, this number is still far less than seen in neighboring states.

“But if it skewed up, we would have to reign it in,” Perry said.