Diversity on the rise in MSU enrollment

By BRETT NELSON/Montana State News

Montana State University is becoming more diverse with increasing numbers of international and Hispanic students attending the university. According to MSU’s 2014-2015 Quick Facts, 673 students (4 percent) are international students, and 472 students (3 percent) identify with Hispanic/Latino, both figures have increased two percent since 2005.

“We do actively seek international students … This year our focus is mainly Saudi Arabia and maybe India. International students pay out of state tuition, which is a win for the university, since it is about three times as much as in-state tuition,” said International Programs Specialist Brent Leavell.

Deborah Chiolero, international student and scholar advisor said, “There has been an increase in international students in recent years. We are actively recruiting and send out newsletters; we speak at high schools and we travel abroad and inform international students about programs and accommodations available here at MSU.” 

International student of business accounting Alsaleh Saeed Ibrahim said, “I get about 70 credits from Jubail Industrial College in Saudi Arabia and need about 80 evaluation credits from MSU to finish a bachelor degree.”

Leavell explained recruitment methods as well, “Government sponsored scholarships contribute to increased enrollment, especially from Saudi Arabia. We travel three times a year to the markets we are interested in. We attend fairs; we have agencies that send us students, and we are partners with various institutions. We try to build these pathways with other countries. It’s a real agent driven market.”

Campus officials voiced that The College of Business and Entrepreneurship may spark additional interest in MSU. The College of Business and Entrepreneurship received a large $25 million donation last year from MSU alumnus Jake Jabs. Much of the donation is being used to construct the $18 million building that will soon be called Jabs Hall.

Overall, MSU is seeing a trend of increasing enrollment. 15,421 students were enrolled for class last fall, setting yet another enrollment record. 2013 set a record also with 15,294 students scheduled to attend.

MSU has been setting consecutive enrollment records since 2008. The overall number of students attending class at MSU has been increasing for decades, according to the MSU enrollment history data. The total amount of enrolled has increased by 3,171 students since 2005.

– Edited by Erin Murdock



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