NIU Enrollment by Campus — Er, Mostly

When we talk about NIU enrollment we are usually referring to the enrollment at all four campuses, which is the number NIU must report to the state.

With a drop of 4.9% as we had this year, a lot of questions come up. Hypothetically speaking, what if DeKalb had lost 10% but nobody knew because growth at other campuses made up for it?

I requested a more detailed breakdown under the Freedom of Information Act and was denied. During the subsequent review by the Public Access Counselor of the denial, however, counsel for NIU offered these numbers:

LocationFall
2008
Fall
2009
Fall
2010
Fall
2011
Fall
2012
DeKalb Only21, 68521, 37420, 82520, 00519, 012
Hoffman
Estates Only
505458438438381
Naperville
Only
476460483461398
Rockford
Only
170921305849
Other/Multiple
Locations
1, 5612, 0401, 9742, 0282, 029
Totals24, 39724, 42423, 85022, 99021, 869

“Other/Multiple Locations” means there are about 2,000 students who attend classes on more than one campus, and for whatever reason NIU assigns them to none. Leaving room for speculation is not ideal, but this is more information than we had before so to me it was worth the effort.

4 thoughts on “NIU Enrollment by Campus — Er, Mostly”

  1. So when people say, oh yeah, NIU has 25,000 students… that’s a fantasy.

    NIU was approaching 25,000 enrollment at one time (’08 and ’09 — even after the shooting in ’08), but never got over the hump.

    As far as DeKalb’s enrollment, we’re talking about closer to 19,000 (plus those who take classes here AND at least one other campus).

    And of those 19,000, I wonder how many are commuters. I know the university has a department which specifically supports the commuting population… I wonder if they can help break that down.

    Maybe some of this will come out during the reports compiled in NIU’s $120,000 deal with the City of DeKalb sold to us by mayoral candidate Groce.

    Bottom line: people need to stop talking about DeKalb hosting a 25K student population. That’s a dream that was never achieved. 19K is the documented number in 2012.

  2. I was denied by NIU because it claims it prepares only one official report, the one for the state, and that it is not obligated to generate additional data just for me. However, in its response to the Public Access Counselor, NIU counsel proceeded to provide most of what I’d asked for. Go figure.

    The suggestion that NIU has 25,000 enrollment reminds me of the city’s claims (until the latest census results came out) that DeKalb was very close to 50,000 in population. Two peas in a pod.

  3. Lynn, for five years the city’s website insisted that city management projected a 2010 population of 50,000. It was obvious to most of us that this was a bogus self-serving assessment until finally in 2012 city management removed this projection.

    Why are there no ramifications for living in a fantasy land and disseminating false and misleading data?

    Why are we supposed to trust anything these yahoos publish? This is why we need enhanced transparency on many fronts.

    When I work on data-intensive projects, I greatly appreciate when I can share my data set and get extra eyes upon and brains wrapped around its significance. Multiple minds usually lead to the best perspective, soundest modes of communication and deepest levels understanding.

    It’s sad when certain parties take a proprietary interest that they and only they are qualified to cast meaning upon data sets they “own”. We all know it’s public data, but some are slow to the realization.

    Thanks again for looking into something which should have been easier to explore.

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