Northern Arizona University welcomed the largest class of new freshmen ever recorded as a result of setting an enrollment record this fall with 20,562 students.

The 2006 class of new freshmen stands at 2,846, compared to 2,279 last year—a
25 percent increase.

It is a class of increased diversity. Latinos comprise the largest ethnic student group on campus, and NAU saw a 40 percent increase in first-time freshman Latino students. The new freshman class also shows a 57 percent increase in Asian students, a 41 percent increase in African American students and a 12 percent increase in Native American students.

Overall, NAU posted a 34 percent increase among first-time freshman minority students over fall 2005.

“The new freshman class mirrors the overall enrollment of the university with increases in all ethnic student groups and reflects Northern Arizona University’s commitment to build an evermore diverse campus,” said President John Haeger.

The top four home states of first-time freshmen are Arizona, California, Colorado and New Mexico. The number of first-time freshmen from Arizona high schools increased from 64 percent in fall 2005 to 68 percent in fall 2006.

About 73 percent of all first-time freshmen are from Arizona, with 27 percent from out of state.

On the Flagstaff campus, the number of in-state freshmen increased over last year by 404 students to 2,024. The number of out-of-state freshman on the Flagstaff campus increased 121 students to 744.

While NAU continues to expand its out-of-state recruitment efforts, David Bousquet, vice president for Enrollment Management and Student Affairs, noted, “The university continues to accept all qualified Arizona residents for admission and that will not change.”

In addition to the increase in the new freshman class, NAU also saw its largest increase in transfer students, climbing from 1,603 in to 2005 to 1,721 in 2006.