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Fall enrollment up 5.8 percent at Lawrence Tech

Release Date: December 11, 2007

Southfield, Mich. – Aided by strong interest in many graduate degree programs, Lawrence Technological University increased enrollment for the fall semester by 5.8 percent.

Enrollment increases in graduate programs over the fall of 2006 include:

  • Master’s in computer science, up 120 percent.
  • Master’s in electrical and computer engineering, up 81 percent.
  • Doctorate in business administration, up 39 percent.
  • Master’s degrees in the College of Architecture & Design, up 29 percent.
  • Master’s in mechanical engineering, up 25 percent.

Steve Brown, Lawrence Tech’s vice president for advancement, said that advancement and admissions team members, and others in the campus community, are doing much to assess and communicate Lawrence Tech’s strengths and innovations, and that he is pleased to see that effort translate to increased enrollment.

“We’ve drawn upon both our history and prospects for the future,” Brown said. “Recent research has told us that ‘Leadership through Theory and Practice’ scored highest as a positioning statement. Also attracting much attention are President Lewis Walker’s efforts to integrate leadership preparation in all undergraduate curricula, the launch of new degree programs that aim to diversify and strengthen Michigan’s economy, and a renewed emphasis on applied research that hones the hands-on, real world preparedness of our graduates. These messages are moving the needle.”   

According to Lisa Kujawa, assistant provost for enrollment, there has been a long-term trend of growth in graduate degree programs because of Lawrence Tech’s reputation for providing non-traditional education opportunities for working students.

“Many students who select Lawrence Tech for graduate degrees seek to advance their careers, including many people who have earned a bachelor’s degree here,” Kujawa said.

There was an increase in enrollment in most of Lawrence Tech’s 60 degree programs, and all four colleges showed overall increases – the College of Arts and Sciences, up 20 percent; the College of Management, up 8 percent; the College of Architecture and Design, up five percent; and the College of Engineering, up one percent.

There were 3,985 Lawrence Tech students in the final fall census taken in November – 2,384 in undergraduate degree programs and 1,601 in graduate degree programs.

Kujawa said the introduction of tablet laptop computers this year has already improved the educational experience for students, especially freshmen. Lawrence Tech was among the first universities in the country to provide high-end, custom-configured laptop computers to all undergraduates.

Lawrence Tech also has introduced “living and learning” communities in its residence halls, where the freshman population has increased for the fourth straight year. Some 600 students live on campus.

At the undergraduate level, enrollment increases include:

  • Biomedical engineering, up 121 percent.
  • Business management, up 52 percent.
  • Computer science, up 30 percent.
  • Electrical engineering, up 18 percent.

Kevin Finn, interim dean of students at Lawrence Tech, predicted that a 10 percent dip in undergraduate mechanical engineering enrollment will be short-lived if students respond to what’s happening in the job market.

“The feedback we have been getting is that many companies can’t find qualified engineers for the openings they have, even here in Michigan where the economy has been soft,” Finn said. “Nationwide, the job market for mechanical engineers is strong.”

Lawrence Tech also has an undergraduate engineering program in Shanghai, China, where enrollment more than doubled to 624.

Lawrence Technological University, www.ltu.edu, offers more than 60 Undergraduate, Master’s and Doctoral degree programs in Colleges of Architecture and Design, Arts and Sciences, Engineering and Management. Founded in 1932, the 4,500-student, private university pioneered evening classes 75 years ago, and today has a growing number of weekend and online programs. Lawrence Tech’s 102-acre campus is in Southfield, with education centers in Livonia, Clinton Township, Traverse City and Petoskey. Lawrence Tech also offers programs with partner universities in Canada, Mexico, Europe and Asia.