2008 Fall Day 10 Report Highlights

Overall Enrollment Trends (Table 1)

The total number of students enrolled at Calvin this fall is 4,171, a decrease of 53 students from last fall and 28 from the year before. The Traditional Undergraduate Full Time Equivalent (FTE) enrollment stands at 3,980, still within the optimal enrollment range of 3,900-4,100 Traditional Undergraduate FTE as established in the college’s strategic plan. (Traditional undergraduates are students working on their first bachelor’s degree and are not enrolled in a degree program at another institution.) Over 95% of Calvin students are enrolled full time, while the number of part-time students stands at 203 (4.9%), one of the smallest percentages in the past ten years.

Table 1 also shows that the male/female ratio of Calvin students has remained relatively steady compared with last year, at 45 percent males and 55 percent females. Calvin’s gender composition is slightly more balanced than at comparable four-year private (not-for-profit) institutions nationwide, where the undergraduate female percentage is roughly 58 percent.

The number of AHANA (African-, Hispanic-, Asian-, and Native-American) students remained the same as last year, at 268, representing 6.4% of our student body. This compares with only 175 AHANA students enrolled nine years ago. Roughly one-half our students are from outside the state of Michigan (48%), with a substantial percentage (upwards of 9%) from outside the United States. The number and percentage with Canadian Citizenship has shown a slight uptick this year after many years of a slow but steady decline. As recently as 1993, Canadian representation, at eight percent of the student body, was nearly double what it now is.

The percentage of students from the Christian Reformed Church dipped slightly from last year, from 47.0% to 46.6%, while the percentage of students with at least one parent being a Calvin alum increased slightly from 39.7% in 2007 to 40.0% in 2008.

Student Majors (Table 3)

The top five programs of study this fall, as measured by overall student enrollment in specific majors, programs, or concentrations are Engineering (7.6%), Secondary Education (6.9%), Nursing (6.7%), Business (6.4%), and Elementary Education (6.3%). Other top choices include English (4.3%), Biology (4.2%) and Psychology (3.6%).

The departments with the largest number of students in majors/programs are Education (13.1%), Business (11.3%), Communication Arts & Sciences (7.9%), Engineering (7.6%), Nursing (6.7%), Biology (4.7%), English (4.3%), Psychology (3.6%), and Spanish (3.4%).

Departments showing steady increases over the past few years, including this year, are Art, Biology, Engineering, English, Nursing and Spanish. In addition, substantial one-year increases from 2007 to 2008 can be seen in the number of majors in Accountancy, Biology, Biochemistry, Speech Pathology/Audiology, Secondary Education, Mathematics and Statistics, Mechanical Engineering, Nursing, Physical Education, and Spanish. The number and percentage of students that are Undecided about their program of study has been slowly decreasing over the past four years, from 575 students, or 12.0% in 2004 to 453, or 9.5% in 2008.

Merit Scholarships (Table 4)

The overall percentage of our incoming FTIAC class (First Time in any College) awarded top merit scholarships increased slightly, from 58% in 2007 to 60% in 2008. The number and percentage awarded the Trustee, the Faculty Honors and the Honor’s scholarships dropped while those awarded the Presidential and Dean’s increased. In addition, nearly 200 FTIACs were awarded the newer Knollcrest award. Of the 4,014 traditional undergraduates enrolled, 1,826 (45.5%) are receiving one of the top six merit scholarships (Honors and above).

Demographics (Table 5), (Table 6), (Table 7)

Calvin students come from 47 different states plus the District of Columbia, 9 Canadian provinces and 44 other foreign countries. After Michigan (52.1% of all students), the top three states/provinces represented are Illinois (9.3%), Indiana (3.2%), Ontario (3.1%), and California (2.9%). South Korea is the country outside of North America sending us the most students (33), with China, Ghana, Hong Kong, and Japan each contributing a dozen or more students. For detailed counts of students by residence see Table 5.

The distributions of students by race/ethnicity and citizenship are shown in Table 6. The number of AHANA students (African-, Hispanic-, Asian- and Native-American) at the college is 268, the exact same number as last year, but a slight uptick in percentage, from 6.3% to 6.4%. The number of African-American and Native-American students went up slightly, while Hispanic-American and Asian-American numbers decreased somewhat. The largest group of U.S. ethnic minorities enrolled at Calvin is Asian-American, at 127 students. In addition, 68 African-American, 62 Hispanic-American, and eleven Native-American students are enrolled. Students of other ethnicity number 80 this year.

The 157 Canadian citizens reported in Table 6 represent 3.8% of our student body, a percentage that has increased slightly from last year’s 152 Canadians (3.6%). The top five non-North American countries represented by our International students based on their citizenship are South Korea (57 students), Ghana (13 students), China (11 students), India and Indonesia (10 students each), and Nigeria (9 students). The international flavor of Calvin’s student body also benefits from the presence of over 100 U.S. students who come to Calvin with experience living abroad, as well as an additional 47 U.S. students with dual citizenship.

Religious affiliations of students (Table 7) show Christian Reformed students comprising just under 47% of the student body, with the second largest group of students affiliated with a Nondenominational church (12.3%). Other denominational families most frequently represented are Reformed and Presbyterian, each accounting for roughly 6-7% of the student body, while Baptists represent slightly more than 5%.

Retention and Graduation Rates (Table 8)

This year’s FTIAC retention rate of 85.9% is one of the lowest retention rates in the past ten years, dropping almost three percentage points from last years’ highest ever retention rate of 88.6%. The highest retention rates (based on four-year averages) can be found among the following subgroups: top scholarship recipients (92.1%), alumni children (91.6%), students from Christian High Schools (90.2%) and students who are Christian Reformed (90.1%). AHANA retention, at 82.2% this year, increased slightly over the previous two years, but still lags about ten percentage points behind these high retention rate groups. While Access program participant retention is low (73.8%), it has also made some slight gains in the past two years.

The six-year graduation rate of the 2002 FTIAC class, at 75.4%, increased slightly from the previous cohort’s (2001) rate of 73.4%. This years’ graduation rate is the second highest of the past ten years—the 1998 FTIAC class graduation rate was 75.8%. Higher than average graduation rates among the 2002 cohort are found among Top Scholarship recipients (84%), Alumni children (80%) and International Students (80%). Graduation rates for AHANA students inched upward to 59% compared to a 55% rate last year. Driving the increase in the overall graduation rate from last year to this year are higher rates among Michigan students (up from 71% to 75%) and Other church students (up from 69% to 73%), somewhat closing the perennial gap between the graduation rate between students from other denominations and that of Christian Reformed students.

New Students: FTIAC and Transfer (Table 9)

The class of 2008 FTIACs numbers 936, a decrease of 103 students from last year’s class of 1,039 and 91 from the 2006 class. Incoming transfers number 92, up from last year’s 85 and equal to the number matriculating two years ago. The percentage of enrolled FTIACs that are Christian Reformed increased compared with last year, from 45.6% to 46.4%, although the actual number of Christian Reformed students decreased by 40 students. In terms of where the new class of FTIACs comes from geographically, a slightly higher percentage are from Michigan (51% in 2008 vs. 49% in 2007).

The number of conditionally admitted Access Program students increased substantially, from 42 last year to 70 this year. The number of Canadian citizens in the FTIAC class increased by 4, from 39 last year to 43 this year, and other International Citizens decreased from 52 to 41. AHANA students represent nearly 8% of the class compared with 7% last year and 5% the year before.

Admitted to Enrolled Yields (Table 10)

Roughly 46% of admitted FTIACs this year chose to enroll, resulting in an incoming class of 936 students out of 2,039 admitted. The number admitted this year is 130 fewer than the number admitted last year (2,169), and a lower yield than last year’s 48% resulted in a fairly small class. The highest enrollment yields among FTIACs this year are among West Michigan Christian High School students (68%), Canadian citizens (66%), Alumni children (65%), and Christian Reformed Church members (65%).

FTIAC GPAs and Test Scores (Table 11 & 12)

The academic strength of the entering first-year class has remained relatively constant compared with last year’s class on nearly every measure. Mean GPA stands at 3.58, just below last year’s 3.59, while mean ACT Composite remained steady at 25.8. The mean combined SAT score inched upward, from 1,181 last year to 1,200 this year. The middle 50% of GPAs and test scores also remained steady. The percentage of enrolled FTIACs graduating in the top 10% of their high school class mirrored last year’s 27%.

Faculty Composition (Table 13), (Table 14)

The number of full-time teaching faculty at Calvin in 2008 is 320, down 2 from last year. An additional 98 part-time faculty this fall brings the total faculty number to 418. Faculty FTE (a rough measure of the full-time teaching equivalent which adjusts for part-timers and reduced loads) remained constant at 316 this year.

The number of full-time female faculty remained constant at 104, representing nearly one-third of the full-time teaching faculty (32.5%). The number of AHANA (ethnic minority) faculty has increased this year to 28, up from 23 last year. The percentage of full-time faculty with a terminal degree decreased slightly from 82.6% last year to 81.3% this year, and the college-wide student to faculty ratio based on teaching duties is 14.2 to 1, nearly identical to last year.