BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Louisiana State University’s freshman class has set records for size, diversity and accomplishment, the school said Tuesday. It’s the fourth high mark in a row for both size and diversity, spokesman Ernie Ballard said in an email.
The students’ performance so far “suggests a readiness to flourish at LSU. We look forward to supporting this group as part of the ‘scholarship first’ vision for the university,” university President William F. Tate IV said in a news release.
The class is the first with at least 7,000 students, the statement said. The 7,038 total is nearly 350 above last fall’s 6,690.
Overall enrollment at LSU is also at an all-time high of 35,914, the school said.
The freshmen have set a grade-point average high mark of 3.54, up from 3.45 last year, with an average ACT score of 26, up from 25.4 last year, university spokesman Ernie Ballard said.
Even as freshman enrollment rose, so did the percentages of Black and Hispanic students. The class is 18.8% Black and 9.5% Hispanic. That’s up 2 percentage points in Black enrollment and four-tenths of a percentage point in Hispanic enrollment. Louisiana’s population is about 32.8% Black and 5.3% Hispanic, according to the Census Bureau.
“At a time when other schools are scrambling for enrollment and in particular students of color, every year we are breaking records on both fronts,” said the school’s chief diversity officer, Derick J. Rovaris Sr. “The record number of historically underrepresented students is indeed a reflection of the good work so many have done to make LSU a more inclusive university.”
LSU’s total enrollment includes 28,764 undergraduates, 4,755 graduate and professional students, and 2,395 LSU Online students: 622 undergraduate and 1,733 graduate and professional.