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St. Francis has record enrollment

The University of Saint Francis on Wednesday announced record first-day enrollment for the fall semester, including a 20 percent increase in new students.

The increase follows a record number of graduates in May, the university said in a news release.

The announcement came as part of Saint Francis’ official opening to the academic year. The event Wednesday included a convocation and Mass, which was officiated by Bishop Kevin Rhoades of the Catholic Diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend.

Classes began Monday.

According to figures released by school President Sister M. Elise Kriss, the university had an enrollment of 2,405, with 805 new students.

The 2 percent growth from last year’s 2,360 first-day enrollment is largely attributable to online courses in the College of Adult Learning, in addition to generous financial aid packages for incoming students, competitive pricing and placement success.

“With nearly 200 students enrolled in the Virtual Campus for the semester, the University of Saint Francis continues to make education accessible for working adults,” said J.P. Spagnolo, associate vice president of enrollment management.

“Whether students are seeking an associate, bachelor or master degree, we have options to allow adults to meet their educational goals. Our programs are the right combination of high quality curriculum and continuous support to ensure success. That combination is allowing us to attract more adult students who understand the value a University of Saint Francis degree has in the job market.”

The provision of financial aid to 100 percent of first-time, full-time undergraduate students also helped to attract incoming students.

This year, Saint Francis will award more than $14 million in aid, according to the school’s financial aid office.