Cumberland University announced Friday record enrollment, despite the coronavirus pandemic.
The Lebanon school has 2,704 students this fall, an increase of 6% from fall 2019. This year’s enrollment represents a 74% increase in total enrollment since 2015.
Cumberland attributes agility in the planning process, small class sizes and a reputation for a personalized student experience to its success in this area, according to a news release from the university.
“Our faculty and staff have worked tirelessly to reach this impressive milestone for Cumberland,” University President Paul Stumb said in the release. “This has been a challenging year for us and for many of our peer institutions in regards to enrollment and I am thankful that Cumberland has found a way to overcome many of these challenges and is able to provide our students the college experience they expect and deserve.”
Cumberland’s Campus Reopening Planning Team has met throughout the spring and summer to plan for ways to safely reopen campus this fall. The CROP Team attributes quick decision making, flexibility of faculty, staff and students and the small size of campus to the success of the reopening and the surge in enrollment.
Students returned to campus for classes beginning Aug. 17 and are continuing a hybrid learning schedule throughout the fall semester.
“Being a small, private university is an advantage when it comes to dealing with the ever-changing environment of a pandemic,” Executive Director of Enrollment Services Eddie Lovin said in the release. “Because of our size, we have the ability to be more flexible and make quick changes, which is more difficult for larger universities. I’m thankful for the work that the leadership team has done in prioritizing the student experience, both new and returning, and think the constant communication with our students and parents during this time has been crucial in our enrollment growth.”
A breakdown of the 2020 enrollment shows 1,947 undergraduate and 307 graduate students. Students at Cumberland represent 70 Tennessee counties, 34 states and 42 countries.