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Trinity sees growth beyond traditional freshmen admissions

Trinity CommunicationsAugust 28, 2018

President David S. Dockery told staff members at a luncheon marking the start of a new academic year that there are 440 students at Trinity International University this fall enrolled in programs that did not exist on the campus in fall 2014.

Dockery noted that a few programs have seen enrollment decline, but the overall enrollment of TIU is stable.

“That shows why it’s important for us to continue to start these new programs,” Dockery said, noting that many of those additions resulted from goals set in the strategic plan “Heritage and Hope: Trinity 2023,” adopted in February 2015.

Thousands of miles from the Trinity campus, students are taking classes in a Doctor of Ministry program taught in the Korean language. Classes are taught at the Torch Missions Center in Seoul, with more than 80 students enrolled.

“Realistically, we can expect soon to break the 100-student mark,” new Korean D. Min director Jay Noh said. “For a program only in its second full year, this is a highly remarkable accomplishment.”

In California, Trinity Law School offers a Master of Legal Studies for students who want a working knowledge of the legal system, but do not have an interest in sitting for the California bar exam. The first Trinity MLS graduates received degrees in May. Nearly 140 students currently are enrolled in the MLS program.

Other programs started since 2014 that aid in overall enrollment growth:

  • Criminal Justice at the undergraduate level provides preparation for careers in criminal law, legal systems, corrections, and policing.
  • Gap Year program: Worldview at the Abbey in Colorado, where high school graduates can earn up to 30 hours of transferable credit to Trinity
  • MA in Leadership is a faith-integrated program designed to enhance leadership skills. It gives students a choice of three leadership concentrations: international, organizational and nonprofit.
  • MA in Athletic Training through Trinity Graduate School offers the only accredited program of its kind in Illinois, meeting or exceeding all recognized standards in the field.

When traditional freshmen began arriving on campus earlier this month, their numbers also were on the upswing. The new group was the largest in several years, exceeding last year’s total and the three-year average for traditional freshmen.

But TIU also welcomes 55 upperclassmen transfer students this fall. Josiah Joseph, a transfer student from the University of Northwestern Ohio, hails from Trinidad and Tobago. A member of the men’s soccer team, Joseph focuses on goals beyond the field of play. He will major in accounting.

“I would like to get a job at an accounting firm,” Joseph said, “but as I always say, it’s according to whatever God has planned for me.”

Beyond the new freshmen and transfers, Trinity is attracting students in a variety of geographic locations through innovative academic offerings.

Although final totals will not be in the books until sometime in September, it appears Trinity will welcome about 950 new students in all programs at the start of the 2018-19 academic year.

“That number shows an increase compared to recent years,” Dockery said. “Our Master of Arts programs in the divinity school are up, the MLS numbers are up, and enrollment on our Florida campus looks quite encouraging.

“We’re encouraged by these trends and hopeful for the days ahead.”

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