State Tech on Tuesday welcomed a record-breaking 2,200 students to campus, an 8% increase over last year and the sixth straight year for record first-year enrollment. It comes just days after being …
State Tech on Tuesday welcomed a record-breaking 2,200 students to campus, an 8% increase over last year and the sixth straight year for record first-year enrollment. It comes just days after being ranked the number one college in the country for the fourth year in a row by WalletHub.
“We are in a very good place when it comes to manageable growth,” said State Tech President Dr. Shawn Strong, noting enrollment has grown 75% over the last six years. “We have been averaging 188 new students a year for the last five years. This rate of growth allows us to add space, parking, and student activities to match the number of students. This year, housing has been a challenge, with local developers being hesitant to build with labor shortages and high material costs. We are grateful Lincoln University was willing to partner with us this year and house some of our students.”
State Tech also saw its fifth consecutive overall enrollment record, and Dr. Strong is excited about the increase in enrollment and what it means to be the number one college in the country.
“When it comes to technical education, no one does it better than State Tech,” he said. “Employers know this, and students know if they want the best, go to State Tech. The fact that we can continue to grow when the unemployment rate is so low is a testament to our reputation and outstanding value proposition.”
State Tech is prepared for the increase in students with the creation of new academic buildings and a new parking lot, but traffic could be slow for the first few days of the academic year.
“We know the traffic can be a hassle for a few weeks until everyone gets the timing down,” said Dr. Strong. “In my discussions with MoDOT, funding to address the congestion around the college has been built into the 2024 budget. We have seen preliminary plans for our intersection, and MoDOT is anticipating we will continue to grow.”
State Tech is not only adding educational space to the campus but also recreational space for students. The Top Tracer driving range will be opening on Sept. 8, and State Tech is less than a year away from a grand opening of the new multipurpose entertainment venue. The center will include a wide selection of amenities, including a 50-seat theatre, state-of-the-art golf simulators, a sports bar, pro shop, outdoor gaming area, e-sports gaming zone, duckpin bowling, and a 300-person event center that will overlook a nearby lake.
“We are so excited to provide additional events as well as recreational and entertainment spaces for our current and future students,” said Vice President of Student Affairs Dr. Chris Bowser. “We believe this will be a recruiting tool for any student who is looking for an elite education while having fun both inside and outside the classroom.”
PowerUp activities were held on Monday to welcome students.