This report provides data on Calvin's fall enrollment. Five and ten year enrollment trends are provided, along with student demographics, student majors, details on the new class of entering first-time students, and counts of faculty and academic department course activity.
2018 report summary
Overall Enrollment Trends (Table 1)
The total number of students enrolled at Calvin for the fall of 2018 is 3,732, a decrease of 108 students from last fall and down 186 from the year before. The Traditional Undergraduate Full Time Equivalent (FTE) enrollment stands at 3,443, down 117 from last year. (Traditional undergraduates are students working on their first bachelor’s degree and are not enrolled in a degree program at another institution. Calvin Prison Initiative students are also excluded.) Ninety-three percent of Calvin’s students are enrolled full time, while the number of part-time students stands at seven percent—stable compared with last year, but up from 2-3 years ago. The addition of our Prison Initiative students has contributed to the increase in the overall part-time numbers.
Table 1 also shows that the male/female ratio of Calvin students tilts slightly more toward female students, but comes in this year somewhat more balanced than in recent years, at 54% female and 46% male. Again, the addition of our all-male prison student population has contributed to a slightly higher male percentage over the past few years. Calvin’s gender composition is somewhat more balanced than at four-year private (not-for-profit) institutions nationwide, where the undergraduate female percentage is generally around 58 percent.
The number of AHANA, or U.S. ethnic/racial minority, students at Calvin grew modestly, from 621 in 2017 to 629 this year. AHANA students now represent 16.9% of our student body, more than double the 293 AHANA students (7.2%) enrolled in 2009.
Slightly more than one-half of our students are from Michigan (54%), with another 16% coming from the neighboring Great Lakes states of Indiana, Illinois, Ohio, and Wisconsin. The number of International students has remained relatively stable compared with last year, increasing by one, from 455 in 2017 to 456 in 2018, representing slightly over 12% of the student body.
The percentage of students from the Christian Reformed Church decreased from 30.6% in 2017 to 29.1% this year, continuing a trend where we have been declining one to two percentage points per year. The percentage of students with at least one parent being a Calvin alum, at 33%, is relatively stable compared with last year, but down in raw numbers, from 1,177 to 1,134.
Student Majors (Table 3)
The top three programs of study this fall, as measured by overall student enrollment in specific undergraduate majors or programs are Engineering (10.1%), Business (8.2%), and Nursing (6.6%). Other top choices include Biology (4.8%), Psychology (4.5%), Elementary Education (4.3%), Secondary Education (3.7%), Kinesiology (3.7%), Computer Science (3.4%) and Biochemistry (3.3%). Roughly 13% of students are pursuing a Pre-Health track (e.g. Pre-Med, Pre-Dental, Pre- Physical Therapy, etc.).
The departments with the largest number of students in majors/programs are Business (12.3%), Engineering (10.1%), Education (9.3%), Nursing (6.6%), Biology (5.0%), Kinesiology (4.9%), Computer Science (4.7%), Communication Arts and Sciences (4.6%), Psychology (4.5%) and Chemistry and Biochemistry (4.4%). Some of the smaller or mid-size majors showing notable increases over the past 2-3 years are Graphic Design, Chemistry, Film and Media, Digital Communications Group, Linguistics, Physics and Political Science.
Merit Scholarships (Table 4)
The overall percentage of our incoming FTIAC class (First Time In Any College) awarded one of our merit scholarships comes in at 92.5%, somewhat lower than last year’s 95%. The number of National Merit scholars in the class is five, down from seven last year, and thirteen the year before. Of the 3,465 traditional degree-seeking undergraduates enrolled, 2,730 (79%) are receiving one of our merit scholarships. National Merit Scholars, at 40 overall, represent 1.2% of our degree-seeking undergraduates.
Demographics (Tables 5–7)
Both students’ place of residence and their citizenship provide insight into the regional distribution, diversity and international flavor of our student body. For detailed counts of students by residence see Table 5, which shows that Calvin students come from 45 different states, 7 Canadian provinces and 63 other foreign countries. After Michigan (54% of all students), the top five states/provinces represented are Illinois (8.5%), California (3.4%), Indiana (3.2%), Wisconsin (2.2%), and Ohio (1.8%). South Korea is the country outside of North America sending us the most students (69), with Ghana next at 52 students, China with 40, India with 25, and Nigeria and Thailand with 19.
The 32 Canadian citizens reported in Table 6 represent just under 1% of our student body, a percentage that has decreased from 2% (78 students) just four years ago. The top five non-North American countries represented by our International students based on their citizenship are South Korea (164 students), Ghana (53 students), China (43 students), India (26 students), Nigeria (19 students), Honduras and Indonesia (13 students each), and Ethiopia (12 students).
The distributions of U.S. students by race/ethnicity are also shown in Table 6. The number of AHANA students (Ethnic and Racial minorities) at the college is 629, up eight over last year, and up in percentage from 16.2% to 16.9%. Traditional Undergraduate AHANA are also showing percentage increases, from 15.6% in 2017 to 16.2% in 2018, although the increase in actual numbers is only two.
Religious affiliations of students (Table 7) show Christian Reformed students comprising 29.1% of the student body, down about one and one-half percentage points from 30.6% last year. The second largest group of students affiliates with a nondenominational church (16.9%). Other denominational families frequently represented are Reformed and Presbyterian, accounting for six and eight percent of the student body, respectively, while Baptists and Other represent another five to six percent each. Roman Catholics are the next largest group, at just over 4%.
Retention and Graduation Rates (Table 8)
This year’s FTIAC first to second year retention rate of 86.5% is steady compared with last years’ 86.7% and a modest two percentage point improvement over the 2015 rate of 84.6%. The highest retention rates (based on four-year averages) can be found among the following subgroups: alumni children (92.3%), students who are Christian Reformed (90.0%), students from Christian High Schools (88.7%), Top Scholarship recipients (88.6%), and International students (88.4%).
AHANA retention, at 85.5%, shows a positive trend for the second year in a row while Access program participant retention came in at 70%, down somewhat from last years’ highest rate since 2009.
The six-year graduation rate of the 2018 FTIAC class, at 76.9%, is up substantially compared with last year’s reported rate of 72.1%, and is likely one of the highest rates ever for Calvin. Higher graduation rates among the 2018 cohort (using four-year averages) are evident among Alumni children (83%), Top Scholarship recipients (81.5%), Christian Reformed students (79.5%), Christian High School students (79.1%) and Females (78.7%). Male student graduation rates consistently lag behind those of their female counterparts by roughly nine percentage points, on average. Graduation rates for AHANA students this year, at 58.3%, came in slightly lower than last year’s 60.5%, while Access program participants also declined, from 47% in 2017 to 44% this year.
New Students: FTIAC and Transfer (Tables 9 & 10)
The incoming class of 2018 FTIACs numbers 825, a decrease of 64 students (-7.2%) from last year’s class of 889. Incoming transfers number 75, down one from last years’ 76 transfers. The number of enrolled FTIACs that are Christian Reformed (245) is up slightly compared with last year (242), representing just under 30% of the class. The number of the class having one or more parents that are alumni has declined slightly, from 273 in 2017 to 270 in 2018. In terms of where the new class of FTIACs comes from geographically, a larger percentage are from Michigan this year (53.2% in 2018 vs. 51.2% in 2017). A slightly smaller percentage of the class comes from nearby Great Lakes States (17.2% this year vs. 18.3% in 2017).
In terms of the types of High Schools FTIACs attended, the overarching trend over the past ten years had been one of increasing numbers from public high schools and fewer from Christian high schools. In 2018 that trend was interrupted and we saw 59 fewer FTIACS enrolling from Public High Schools, while the Christian High School numbers decreased by only 5. The numbers from our Key West Michigan Christian schools are up slightly (from 203 in 2017 to 211 in 2018).
The number of International students in the FTIAC class declined slightly from 126 last year to 112 this year. AHANA students, at 137 in this years’ class, represent 16.6% of the class compared with 145 students (16.3%) in 2017 and 133 students (14.6%) in 2016. The number of Access Program students in the FTIAC class, at 63 is down substantially this year compared to 87 the prior year.
Enrolled to Admitted Yields (Table 10)
Our yield of FTIACs this year (percentage of admitted students that enrolled) decreased from 33.1% last year to 27.2% this year. The highest enrollment yields among FTIACs this year are among Key West Michigan Christian High School students (59%), Christian Reformed Church members (53%), and Alumni children (52%). Yields of subgroups declining more than the overall average are among Michigan Public school students, those from Great Lakes States other than Michigan, and International students.
FTIAC GPAs and Test Scores (Tables 11 & 12)
The academic strength of this fall’s entering first-year class, in terms of HS GPA and test scores, is strong and consistent with recent classes. Mean GPA came in slightly higher at 3.79 compared with last years' 3.77, while the mean ACT score inched upward from 26.4 to 26.8. Mean combined SAT score also increased, from 1,142 to 1,174 (when converting the New SAT score to the Old SAT) after dropping from 1,175 the year before. The 25th and 50th percentiles of high school GPAs and ACT scores are up slightly compared with last year, while the SAT scores have returned to their 2016 levels after a lower scoring year last year. The percentage of enrolled FTIACs graduating in the top 10% of their high school class edged up from 28% to 30%.
Faculty Composition (Tables 13 & 14)
The number of full-time teaching faculty at Calvin this fall is 232, down 14 from last fall. An additional 104 part-time faculty brings the total faculty number to 336. The percentage of faculty that are full-time stands at 69% compared to over 80% as recently as 2011.
The number of full-time male faculty decreased by 14 from last year while the number of full-time female faculty remained steady, resulting in a two point increase in the percent female, moving from 34.1% to 36.2%.
The number of AHANA (ethnic minority) full-time faculty, at 22, dropped by two from last year. They represent 9.5% of the total number of full-time faculty—a slight drop in percentage from last year (9.8%).
The percentage of full-time faculty with a terminal degree has increased slightly from last year to 90.1%, which is the highest percentage of the prior nine years.