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Central Michigan University welcomes largest class since 2014

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Central Michigan University in Mt. Pleasant

Central Michigan University in Mt. Pleasant

MOUNT PLEASANT, Mich. (WJRT) –  More than 2,000 new freshman students will start classes next week at Central Michigan University. It's the largest incoming class the university has seen in eight years.

Jennifer DeHaemers, vice president of student recruitment and retention, said it's a step in the right direction but not the end goal.

“What we're doing is taking the approach on how do we build our new student, new undergraduates, from transfers as well as freshmen for main campus, and really get that number up?” DeHaemers said. “Probably in about two or three years we should cross that plane.”

Within that time frame, the university plans to improve other areas of campus to attract new students, including residence halls.

Back in March, CMU decided to close the north campus residence halls for the upcoming fall semester due to that lower enrollment.

DeHaemers said it's more than just the number of students that would be needed to fill the hall but other renovation and staffing problems that needed addressing.

“It was really about ensuring the student experience was good, ensuring that we had the staffing deployed in the right place to be able to serve students and to give us a chance to take that facility offline and make some renovations,” she said.

But to get those renovations done and back open, CMU says getting enrollment backup is a good start.

“Are there things we can do to make it more fresh and exciting,” DeHaemers said. “That new kind of look to the housing is always really a good selling point with students."

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