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Release: Sept. 26, 2002

UI Sees 19 Percent Increase In New Freshmen From Western Iowa

The number of new freshmen from Iowa's western counties at the University of Iowa increased by 19.4 percent in the fall of 2002, contributing to the largest freshman class in UI history. By comparison, enrollment of new freshmen from central Iowa counties increased 2.9 percent and from eastern counties 3.6 percent.

UI officials say they are especially pleased by the increase in western county freshmen, which they believe reflects the University's renewed commitment to reach out to the farthest counties.

"We've worked hard the last two years to connect with students in Western Iowa," says Michael Barron, UI director of admissions. "We're happy to see this increase, and we'll continue to work hard to make sure that students in the western counties are aware of the excellent opportunities we offer at Iowa."

Counties considered "western" by the UI admissions office are Lyon, Osceola, Dickinson, Emmet, Sioux, O'Brien, Clay, Palo Alto, Plymouth, Cherokee, Buena Vista, Pocahontas, Woodbury, Ida, Sac, Calhoun, Monona, Crawford, Carroll, Greene, Harrison, Shelby, Audubon, Guthrie, Pottawattamie, Cass, Adair, Mills, Montgomery, Adams, Union, Fremont, Page, Taylor, and Ringgold. The western county showing the greatest increase was Woodbury, which sent 24 more new freshmen to Iowa than last year.

U.S. News and World Report recently ranked the UI the 20th best public university in the United States, and the Fiske Guide to Colleges again ranked Iowa among a select group of 43 colleges nationwide that are "best values."