Transfer students increase

From the sparkling waterfalls of the beautiful, recently renovated Loch Norse to the unsightly construction areas that will one day house a new event center and Student Union, it is visually evident that progress lives at Northern Kentucky University.

Randy Hitt, a junior who is studying to become a photographer, transferred this fall from the University of Louisville because of NKU’s outstanding reputation in the arts.

Hitt said for him, like many students, it was a combination of several things that led him to NKU.

“I have a thing for concrete,” joked Hitt, who visited campus before making his final decision to transfer. “Actually, it was simply the opportunity to get away from home, pursue an education in my field of interest and live just outside a big city with plenty to do. All things considered, NKU just seemed like the right place for me.”

Progress, however, can also be measured through numbers, and over the last 10 years, the numbers suggest that more and more existing college students are choosing NKU for a change of pace.

In fact, the 683 transfer students who enrolled at NKU for fall 2005 represented nearly a 25 percent increase over the enrollment numbers for transfer students in 1995, according to the Office of Institutional Research.

Enrollment numbers alone, however, don’t fully represent the level of interest prospective transfers have in NKU. The 683 transfer students who enrolled at NKU last fall represented just over half of the 1,186 prospective transfer students who applied for admission, according to Ava Nienaber, assistant director of Admissions for Transfer Services.

Nienaber explained that the discrepancy between the enrollment and application numbers is caused by a variety of things, ranging from students who fail to qualify to prospective transfers who apply at multiple schools. But regardless of whether some applicants end up not attending NKU, Nienaber remains encouraged by the rising number of applications, which climbed to 1,239 this fall.

While the increase suggests that the university’s profile within the state is growing, numerous considerations factor into students’ decisions to change schools. Many students transfer here to be closer to home, some to be further away and others transfer in order to pursue a specific area of study.