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Wednesday, 13 August 2014 14:54

Record enrollment expected as WCU classes begin

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The Western Carolina University community is making preparations to welcome what is expected to be a record number of students for the start of fall semester classes on Monday, Aug. 18.

“Indicators are pointing to another all-time high in student enrollment, and we should exceed last year’s record enrollment of 10,107. Also, we anticipate that we will surpass last year’s first-year student enrollment of 1,614, and we could even see an entering class of 1,700 or more,” said Phil Cauley, WCU’s director of student recruitment and transitions.

Of the more than 10,000 students taking WCU courses, fewer than 8,000 will set foot on WCU’s campus in Cullowhee this year. Nearly 2,000 students are solely taking classes on line, known as “distance learners.” Another 500 attend WCU’s satelite campus in Biltmore Park. That leaves about 7,750 students who will be attending class on Cullowhee’s campus, according to Cauley.

The official fall enrollment will be established Friday, Aug. 29, which is the 10th class day and the census date as specified by the University of North Carolina General Administration.

Most freshmen will move into their rooms on campus Friday, Aug. 15, and upperclassmen will return that weekend. 

A week of activities has been planned to welcome all the students for the 2014-15 academic year, including WCU’s annual Valley Ballyhoo celebration Saturday, Aug. 16. More than 5,000 WCU students typically attend Valley Ballyhoo each year to enjoy the festivities and visit information tables hosted by campus and community organizations. 

New on campus this fall will be Which Wich and Moe’s Southwest Grill, dining venues opening in the food court at Courtyard Dining Hall.

Also, the Catamount Clothing and Gifts store located in A.K. Hinds University Center has moved and rejoined the WCU Bookstore at the recently remodeled bookstore location. 

In addition, a parking lot at the center of campus near the Alumni Tower and Coulter and Forsyth buildings has been converted to a metered, pay-by-the-hour parking lot. Beginning Aug. 18, the parking lot will be open to anyone, including visitors, and will cost $3 per hour between 7 a.m. and 5 p.m. on weekdays. Two multi-meters in the lot will accept credit cards, debit cards and Cat Cash, which is money preloaded on WCU Cat Cards. The multi-meters will not accept cash.

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