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Press Release

Metro State Latino Population Accelerates

Total 2010 Fall Enrollment Up 4.8 percent


Contact: Tim Carroll, Office 303-556-5136, Cell 303-870-7705

Posted: September 21, 2010



(Denver, Colo.) — Continuing a trend that started 12 years ago, enrollment is up at Metropolitan State College of Denver. The college recorded 24,008 students enrolled for the fall 2010 semester, which is a 4.8 percent increase over last fall.

A small portion of the increased enrollment is due to the addition this fall of master’s programs to the college’s offerings. The two new graduate programs, in accounting and teacher education, enrolled a total of 50 students. Undergraduate enrollment, at 23,958, is up 4.6 percent.

Full-year full-time equivalent students increased by 4.1 percent. Full-time students increased by 2.9 percent and part-time students increased by 7.5 percent.

The number of students of color jumped 19.8 percent over last fall—from 5,683 to 6,806—and now account for 28.4 percent of total enrollment, compared to 24.8 percent last fall. The majority of this growth was in the category of Hispanic or Latino, who now number 3,824 students, or 16 percent of the total number of students. This represents a 23.8 percent increase in Latino students over fall 2009.

“We are making significant progress toward the College’s goal to become a Hispanic Serving Institution,” Associate Vice President of Enrollment Services Judi Diaz Bonacquisti says. “Nineteen percent of our new students this year identified themselves as Latino. And a full 70 percent of our student growth this year is in Latinos.” 

Early this year Metro State was identified by Excelencia in Education as one of only four institutions recognized nationally as an emerging Hispanic Serving Institution (HSI). Federal recognition as an HSI requires a 25 percent Latino enrollment.

The number of Black or African American Non-Hispanic students also increased, by 13.9 percent, to 1,511 or 6.3 percent of the student population. Interestingly, the “All Other/Unknown” category totals 1,844, which is a decrease of 19 percent from last year. According to Ellen Boswell, coordinator of institutional research, the recent federally mandated changes allowing students to select more than one ethnicity has had a significant impact in reducing the “All Other/Unknown” category.

“As predicted, when we change to the two-question format for collecting the ethnicity and race information, the students coded as All Other/Unknown decline significantly,” she says.

Continuing students showed an increase of 6.5 percent, which can be attributed to Metro State’s retention efforts, Boswell says.  Although new students decreased by 0.9 percent, transfers students increased by 2.8 percent.

Resident students increased by 1,039 to 23,091, and now total 96.4 percent of the students. Students from the seven-county area increased by 4.5 percent, with the largest increases coming from Denver County (493 students) and Adams (161 students).

The top 10 majors for students are:
• management – 1,263
• biology – 1,236
• criminal justice and criminology – 1,173
• psychology – 1,074
• art – 1,031
• accounting – 997
• English – 758
• marketing – 736
• human performance and sport – 681
• history – 658

There are 2,193 students seeking teacher licensure, which is slightly lower than Census Fall 2009. The breakdown is as follows: 1,559 students who are seeking a degree and licensure, 582 students who are seeking Teaching Licensure only (post-baccalaureate), 52 students who are interested in Teacher Licensure but are not yet admitted. 

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About Metropolitan State College of Denver


With more than 24,000 students, Metro State is Colorado’s leader in educating undergraduate Coloradans. Starting in the fall of 2010, the College is offering master’s degrees in accounting and teacher education, with plans to offer a master’s in social work in fall 2011. The College enrolls the highest number of students of color among four-year colleges in the state. It boasts 67,500 alumni, the bulk of whom remain in Colorado after graduation.