DSU preparing for approximately 2,500 freshmen

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Dixie State University is gearing up for an influx of approximately 2,500 freshmen coming in fall 2017.

“There are 2,500 students [for fall 2017 semester] who have indicated at some point that they will be here,” said Director of Advisement Mike Olson. 

The numbers for fall 2017 are a higher number than most years, and DSU officials have seen steady increases every year, but DSU officials don’t know what the exact number will be until students are actually taking classes, Olson said.

“It’s exciting to have that many students interested in [DSU],” Olson said. “I think the word is getting out about the quality of education students are going to be getting [at DSU] in a great environment. The learning, active lifestyle is a popular thing right now, and I think students understand that.”

Higher enrollment impacts advising by giving them an opportunity to interact with students, and that’s really what we care about, Olson said.

Writing Center secretary Braxton Thornley said, “We have started to prepare for an influx of student by adding more tutor hours to the schedule.”

Even though the Writing Center is not extending their hours, it will have more tutors available per hour due to the higher freshman count. The Writing Center will also be starting a few different pilot programs because of the influx of students, that will separate and help upper division students and general education students. In turn, they will have tutors specifically for upper division classes and tutors for general education students, which will hopefully streamline things, Thornley said. 

“We will hire tutors and more tutors and more tutors if necessary,” Tutor Center coordinator Rowena Thiess said. “We will make sure the students have the tutoring they have paid for and therefore are entitled to.”

Thiess said she waits until the fall to hire tutors for two to three weeks into the semester in order to have a good feel for what students’ needs are.

“We take our cue from the environment we are in and from the demand,” Thiess said.

The Tutoring Center receives a part of student fees to hire their staff. Thiess said. At that point, tutors are hired within that set budget.

“The budget is set and changes by the number of enrolled full-time students,” Thiess said.

Thiess said, she had between 20 to 30 tutors for the 2016 school year so she anticipates needing to hire several more tutors for fall 2017.

“We have great department chairs and great deans who manage those [housing, classrooms, and professors] issues very well, and I am confident they will do a good job of monitoring and adding classes where we need them,” Olson said.