MSU-Meridian reports 12 percent enrollment increase for fall

Contact:  Lisa Sollie

MERIDIAN, Miss.— Mississippi State University-Meridian is posting a 12 percent enrollment increase over last fall with 654 students enrolled compared to 584 for Fall 2018. The university is also reporting more undergraduate students enrolled at both its College Park and RileyAssistant professor of management, Adam Pervez, speaks with business students in the Entrepreneurship class located in the Deen Building, part of MSU-Meridian's Riley Campus in downtown Meridian. (Photo by Lisa Sollie, MSU-Meridian) campuses in Meridian.

“It’s invigorating to see a continued pattern of enrollment growth on our Meridian campuses," said Terry Dale Cruse, associate vice president and head of campus. “Our largest increases are primarily in business and accounting, and we’ve seen significant growth in the number of students taking advantage of the flexibility offered by synchronous online delivery," he added.

In synchronous classes, students can remotely connect to face-to-face classes in real time and interact with faculty and other students as if they were present in person.

“We’re excited over the growth of the Division of Business,"said William Hill, division head. “We believe the enrollment growth we are experiencing can be attributed to the introduction of the Bachelor of Accountancy degree in the fall of 2016 and the professional Master of Business Administration degree program established in summer 2018, as well as the success of our Collegiate DECA chapter, which began in 2014,” he added.

The award-winning chapter has garnered attention and accolades from across the state and nation and has had a significant impact on attracting business students from across the region.

MSU-Meridian’s graduate student enrollment also saw increases, primarily in the Division of Education.

“We have a great team that works hard to meet all the needs of our students,” said Kim Hall, head of the Division of Education and a professor of counseling at MSU-Meridian. “Our faculty are supportive, caring individuals who are passionate about developing leaders within our community. Their ability to connect with students, discuss real-world issues and bring excitement into the classroom are what make our programs come to life.”

Future enrollment increases may be possible through a new Bachelor of Applied Science. The BAS degree will maximize transfer of technical credit from Mississippi community colleges by allowing up to 45 credits for technical and military training to be applied toward a bachelor’s degree.

“We are excited about the potential this presents to expand our Partnership Pathways initiative with community colleges and the military,” said Cruse. “Students will be able to apply more technical credits than ever toward a bachelor’s degree uniquely designed to meet the workforce needs of our state. The BAS degree makes a strong statement about the value of technical training provided by our community college partners and the military.”

The BAS will be offered in both face-to-face and online formats making it more accessible to working adults.

The continued enrollment growth in Meridian and the potential for more, according to Cruse, is indicative of increased collaboration with the Starkville campus and a closer strategic look at the programs offered at the Meridian campus.           

“Perhaps the greatest component of our success is our people,” said Cruse. “We have a great team of faculty and staff, outstanding educational partners at both the K-12 and community college levels and a highly supportive community.”

MSU-Meridian serves primarily east central Mississippi and west Alabama. Learn more at

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