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Two Houston-area universities see record enrollment amid coronavirus pandemic

HOUSTON – During the COVID-19 pandemic, universities, across the country and in the Houston-area, have been forced to pivot and innovate to the likes of which they’ve never experienced before.

Despite the challenges, two Houston-area universities have managed to do that and the results are reflected in the university’s enrollment numbers. The University of Houston and Houston Baptist University announced Tuesday that both universities are seeing record enrollment during the pandemic.

UH’s preliminary enrollment for the fall 2020 semester is at 47,101 students, up 2.1% over the previous year. UH says a key to its success has been making academic programs accessible to academically strong students from diverse backgrounds.

HBU saw it’s highest total enrollment in university history for the eighth consecutive year with about 4,000 students. HBU credits the university’s success to two things: being able to pivot, even in the middle of a pandemic and the university’s individualized approach to admissions and the financial aid process, despite having a large pool of applicants.

“That’s kind of the meat of what we do. We get to know parents names, families to help them understand who HBU is and we get to know who they are as well,” said Jason Fletcher, HBU’s Director of Undergraduate Recruitment.

Some HBU students believe the upward trend in enrollment will continue because the university is providing more and more opportunities.

“They’ve done such a great job reaching out to schools and getting more people and bringing in more diversity and I think also because our sports have been improving a lot. I think that helped a ton too,” said Arianna Jacobs, an HBU student.


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