Fall enrollment nears 29,000

Jaalen Best moved into College Hill Suites on Aug. 14, hoping to avoid the rush of ECU move-in traffic before starting a new job at the campus recreation center.

“I’m glad I did it early,” he said.

The junior exercise physiology major from Clinton was the first in his suite, having hauled in all the necessities for a new school year.

Best was among approximately 5,400 students who moved into residence halls over a four-day period. The fall semester began Aug. 20, and by census day Aug. 30, a total of 28,718 students were enrolled.

Saiid Powers of Lumberton immediately connected to ECU. “When I came to campus, it felt like home,” he said. “It was far enough away to say I’m gone, but not too far.”

After several years of record-setting freshman classes, total enrollment this year is slightly smaller than last year, said John Fletcher, ECU’s associate provost of enrollment services. The decrease can be attributed to increased competition from instate and out-of-state universities for students and a higher graduation rate, he said.

Out of the 28,718 ECU students, approximately 4,200 are freshmen and 1,750 are transfer students.