Enrollment grows


Students by Musselman Library

Bluffton’s first-year class includes 242 students which is the largest first-year class since 2011.

Enrollment grows for third year 

For the third year in a row, Bluffton University’s enrollment continues to be on the rise. A large incoming first-year class combined with successful retention efforts and growth in adult and graduate studies enrollments account for a 49-student increase over 2020-21 enrollment.

Bluffton’s first-year class includes 242 students which is the largest first-year class since the 2011 class of 250. The class GPA is also higher and applications were also at an all-time high as were acceptances, with credit going to Bluffton’s test-flexible option.

“The 2021 recruitment cycle was filled with many uncertainties, but one thing is certain: students want to come to Bluffton. We believe our extra efforts to safely and successfully ‘do college’ in person and on campus last year showed high school students that a thriving college experience in the midst of a pandemic is possible,” said Robin Bowlus, vice president of advancement and enrollment management.

Total full-time enrollment of 774, which includes adult and graduate studies, has grown by 55 students in the last three years. Transfer enrollment was stable with 20 students but COVID continues to be a barrier for international student enrollment.

“Bluffton has a strong legacy of enrolling international students who flourish as valuable members of our campus community, but the last two years COVID has prevented many of the students from being able to arrive in the United States,” said Bowlus.

Bluffton’s adult and graduate studies programs have experienced increased enrollment thanks to the Corporate and Education Partner programs.

“I’m extremely proud of the relationships Bluffton has with our Corporate and Education Partners,” said Bowlus. “I look forward to seeing the transformation of our adult students as they continue to be leaders in our region in their workplaces, at home and in their communities.”

Bluffton is now looking ahead and is excited to welcome the next set of students to campus.

“The admissions team, faculty and coaches are well on their way to recruiting the fall 2022 class. There continues to be high interest in the Bluffton University experience and our most popular majors of business, nursing, pre-med and education,” said Bowlus. “The fall is a wonderful time for high school students and their families to visit campus.”  

Located on a 65-acre residential campus, Bluffton offers 90 majors, minors and interdisciplinary programs for undergraduate students, including nationally accredited programs in dietetics, education, music and social work.

Opportunities for working adults include accounting, business management, RN to BSN and social work degree-completion programs and graduate programs in business administration (MBA), education (MAEd) and organizational management (MAOM).

Founded in 1899 and affiliated with Mennonite Church USA, Bluffton University graduates are prepared for life. Ninety-eight percent of Bluffton alumni are employed or in graduate school or long-term service within six months of graduation.