By Cynthia Moberly
Breaking the 1,800 threshold for the first time in school history, Asbury’s total number of enrolled students currently stands at 1,857. Although part of this progression stems from the growing Graduate and Adult Professional Studies programs, the traditional undergraduate program has seen a great deal of prosperity. This seems to have been an exciting amount of growth, and according to Asbury’s Vice President of Enrollment Management Mark Troyer, it has been a blessing.
The growth has been anticipated, but seems to have ul- timately been the result of hard work and recruitment ef- forts. “One of the goals of the president was to grow to over two thousand students,” Troyer said.
As a private school in Kentucky and as a member of the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities (CCCU), Asbury seems to be doing well in com- parison to other schools concerning growth in enrollment. “There are schools that are struggling out there, and we are incredibly blessed to have a campus with great programs and faculty, and we don’t want to take that for granted,” Troyer said.
Although it is easy to notice the long lines in the cafeteria and the seemingly crowded audito- rium during chapel, it is worth noting that a small school in Wilmore, Kentucky has flourished as God gives it the opportunity to enroll more students while other similar schools are struggling.
Much of the growth due to online opportunities will not necessarily affect Asbury’s physical needs, but Troyer stressed that the need for more space due to a growing student body is the kind of prob- lem we want to have. “As we grow, we will address needs as they arise,” Troyer said.
So, why is Asbury continuing to grow even as other schools may be reaching a plateau or even a decrease in enrollment? Transfer student Laura Mills claims that God has an undeniable plan for students who are meant to attend Asbury. “God clearly showed me that Asbury was the school he wanted me to go to,” she said. Asbury students and alumni are also known to have a large part in the process of connecting students from all over the world with the school. The ability of current students and alumni to refer prospective students to Asbury contributes to consistent enrollment increases. “We know that students that are referred by other students or faculty or have alumni connections have a higher chance of actually coming here,” Troyer said.
Freshman Megan Hughes says that what sets Asbury apart is that it promotes a spiritual atmo- sphere unlike any other school, no matter how big or small. “The student body is welcoming and becomes a family so quickly,” Hughes said. “There’s not a place I’d rather be than Asbury.”