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U of I System enrollment grows to more than 83,300
Nearly 3% increase pushes System-wide total to new high for fifth straight year

September 13, 2017

URBANA – Total enrollment increased 2.9 percent to more than 83,300 students across the University of Illinois System this fall, setting a record high for the fifth straight year, according to admissions data released Wednesday.

Combined enrollment at the System’s three universities in Chicago, Springfield and Urbana-Champaign grew to 83,321 from 80,987 a year ago, based on enrollment as of Monday, the 10th day of classes. The 10-day figures are the traditional benchmark for enrollment data among U.S. colleges and universities.

President Tim Killeen said the increase reflects an ongoing push to provide life-changing opportunities for more students and build on a pipeline of world-class graduates – through efforts that include a third straight tuition freeze this fall for in-state freshmen.

“Our commitment to affordability, access and academic quality fosters a global reputation for excellence that continues to attract the best-and-brightest students from across our state and nation and from around the world,” Killeen said.

Growth across the System includes a 2.4 percent increase among in-state undergraduates, from 43,619 to 44,655. Illinois students comprise about 80 percent of undergraduates enrolled this fall.

The U of I System also saw gains in enrollment of African-American and Latino undergraduates for the sixth straight year. Enrollment of African-American undergraduates increased 1.1 percent, from 3,857 to 3,898, while undergraduate Latino enrollment was up 12.5 percent, from 9,201 to 10,347. Combined, African-American and Latino enrollment comprises nearly 25 percent of the System’s undergraduate enrollment.

More students each year also are identifying themselves as multi-race and this category too is showing growth, from 1,619 to 1,678 across the U of I System.

The System has targeted growth in total enrollment and among in-state and underrepresented students through initiatives created under its Strategic Framework, a roadmap that sets high-aspiration goals to build on its service to students and the public good.

Graduate school enrollment across the System increased 2.9 percent, from 22,544 to 23,196, and enrollment of professional students was up 2 percent, from 4,039 to 4,121.

Total enrollment of international students increased 4.9 percent, from 14,966 to 15,693.

System-wide enrollment growth was led by a 4.9 percent increase at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC), where total enrollment rose from 29,120 last fall to 30,539, a new high for the third straight year and the first time over 30,000. Total enrollment also increased 3 percent to 47,826 at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, setting a new record for the seventh straight year. Total enrollment decreased 8.7 percent from 5,428 to 4,956 at the University of Illinois at Springfield (UIS).

In Urbana-Champaign, freshman enrollment was down slightly as planned, decreasing 1 percent from a record 7,592 last fall to 7,518. African-American undergraduate enrollment increased 0.6 percent, from 1,961 to 1,973, and Latino enrollment rose 8.5 percent, from 3,457 to 3,751.

At UIC, freshman enrollment increased 22.9 percent, from 3,307 to a record 4,064. Enrollment of African-American undergraduates increased 4.5 percent, from 1,468 to 1,534, and Latino enrollment was up 15 percent, from 5,508 to 6,336

At UIS, freshman enrollment decreased 7.3 percent, from 300 to 278. African-American undergraduate enrollment decreased 8.6 percent, from 428 to 391, and Latino enrollment rose 10.2 percent, from 236 to 260.


The University of Illinois System is a world leader in research and discovery, the largest educational institution in the state with more than 83,000 students, 24,000 faculty and staff, and universities in Urbana-Champaign, Chicago and Springfield. The U of I System awards more than 20,000 undergraduate, graduate and professional degrees annually.