Southern welcomes largest freshman class in years

BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - Southern University says its enrollment numbers are now up for the first time in years. Recently the Jaguar family has seen its numbers decline. School officials say last year only 774 freshmen enrolled. But, this school year nearly 1,100 freshmen joined the Jaguar Nation.

"We are letting everyone know that the university is alive and it's doing well," said Southern University Chancellor Jim Llorens.

Llorens says the university stepped up the recruiting process in the spring. It reached students with emails, text messages, and using student ambassadors to recruit the next class. He also says students continue to come to Southern because of what it has to offer.

"We have a rich history; we have a great alumni base; we have quality of academic programs, like our nursing, engineering, education, and business programs. All of those are attractive to the students, "said Llorens.

Freshman Wayne Griffin was attracted to Southern's engineering program. He says he wants to stay and graduate.

"Not only will I graduate from here, but be successful and give back to the school and community," said Griffin.

Although, an increase in enrollment is great, Southern officials say the next step is to work on the retention rate.

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