Kean expecting its largest freshman class ever

At a time of declining enrollment nationally, Kean has registered more than 2,000 students

At a time when universities nationwide are struggling with enrollment issues, Kean University announced Tuesday that its freshman enrollment this fall is projected to be the highest in the school’s history, with more than 2,000 students currently registered.

Kean officials say the incoming freshman class is strong academically, too, with an average GPA above 3.1.

Kean President Lamont Repollet said the school’s ability to attract top students in a post-pandemic era is a credit to Kean’s affordable, world-class education.

Lamont Repollet. (File photo)

“Kean University is nationally ranked by U.S. News & World Report for our expansive innovation and the social mobility of our graduates,” he said. “These incoming students see the positive impact and high value that a Kean degree will have on their lives.

“We are New Jersey’s urban research university, with nationally recognized faculty and facilities that are second to none. Today’s students are taking advantage of all that Kean has to offer, and together we will climb to even greater heights.”

There were 1,815 students in Kean’s previous record freshman class, in 2018. On September 1, 2021, amid the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, Kean had more than 1,500 new freshmen enrolled.

Kean increases Hispanic students

A federally designated Hispanic-serving Institution, Kean University reported record growth in its Supera Spanish-Speaking Program.

Incoming student enrollment for Supera increased 250% over 2021, reflecting a nationwide trend that shows growth in Hispanic student enrollment.

Michael Salvatore, senior vice president for administration, said the trend is telling.

“What these numbers show is more and more students see that Kean is heading from great to elite, and they want to be part of that trajectory,” he said.

The school aims to continue growing in stature and reputation. In the past few years, it has invested in hiring new full-time faculty and upgrading its laboratories, classrooms and library as it pursues an R2 Carnegie research designation.

Kean Tuition Promise

The Kean Tuition Promise program is one of the reasons why the school is bringing in its largest-ever freshman class.

The Kean Tuition Promise can cover up to full tuition and fees in the first two years of study for select low-income students who apply as freshmen and meet eligibility requirements.

Eligible students could get a free four-year college education by coupling the Kean Tuition Promise with New Jersey’s Garden State Guarantee, which offers financial aid in the third and fourth years of study at New Jersey public universities.

Earlier this year, Kean was designated as a Professional/Doctoral University by the Carnegie Commission on Higher Education, reflecting the University’s increased number of doctoral programs offered and degrees awarded, and Kean’s strong commitment to research.

Kean officials said their dedication to costs also is key.

Marsha McCarthy, vice president for enrollment services, said Kean students graduate with less debt than the national average.

“Kean University takes care of students through academic and financial aid support services that help them realize their dream of earning a college degree,” she said. “A college education is a big investment for students and their families. Kean seeks to maximize students’ return on that investment by providing an exceptional college experience that is affordable, accessible and takes students to where they want to be.”