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WNIJ's summary of news items around our state.

WIU Aims To Hold Onto Enrollment Numbers After Seeing Another Drop


Western Illinois University’s short-term goal is to stabilize enrollment at 10,000 students, but it came up a bit short this fall.

Western says its current enrollment is 9,441, which is a drop of nine percent from last fall and nearly 15 percent from two years ago.

Ron Williams is Western’s Vice President for Student Services. He said the numbers come as no surprise given what’s happened in the state the past couple years.

“…Primarily the crisis of confidence in the state and the two year budget impasse that we just had,” he said. “And so we’re just looking forward to the future. At least we have a budget now. We have some means in which to do some planning and to make some projections and just to move forward.”

WIU said there are some silver linings in the enrollment data. The number of graduate students increased by a dozen, and the number of honors students increased by 5.5 percent.

Western has two campuses; enrollment in Macomb is 8,100 while there are 1,300 students enrolled in the Quad Cities.

Illinois Public Universities - Fall 2017 Enrollment

Rich is the News Director at Tri States Public Radio. Rich grew up in the northwest suburbs of Chicago but now calls Macomb home. Rich has a B.A in Communication Studies with an Emphasis on Radio, TV, and Film from Northern Illinois University. Rich came to love radio in high school where he developed his “news nerdiness” as he calls it. Rich’s high school had a radio station called WFVH, which he worked at for a couple years. In college, Rich worked at campus station WKDI for three years, spinning tunes and serving at various times as General Manager, Music Director and Operations Manager. Before being hired as Tri States Public Radio’s news director in 1998, Rich worked professionally in news at WRMN-AM/WJKL-FM in Elgin and WJBC-AM in Bloomington. In Rich’s leisure time he loves music, books, cross-country skiing, rooting for the Cubs and Blackhawks, and baking sugar frosted chocolate bombs. His future plans include “getting some tacos.”
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