Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

60 percent of freshmen out-of-state


When Douglas Fair, a junior at The University of Alabama, first considered the University, he said it was scholarship offers that caught his eye. Fair, originally from Knoxville, Tenn., eventually decided to give the campus a visit.

“Once you come down here, it’s hard not to want to come back,” he said.

In the end, Fair joined the 16,298 students that make up the University’s out-of-state student body, 47 percent of the total enrollment. Fair, now a biology major, is president of The 49, an out-of-state student organization.

As the number of scholarships The University of Alabama awards grows each year, so does number of out-of-state students. This fall, out-of-state, overseas military and foreign enrollees comprised 60 percent of the fall 2013 freshman class, according to data provided by the Office of Institutional Research.

And while those 4,048 out-of-state freshmen come from all over, the large majority, like Fair, calls the four states contiguous to Alabama home – Georgia, Florida, Tennessee and Mississippi.

Of those states, 535 students came from Georgia, 359 came from Florida, 216 came from Tennessee, and 78 came from Mississippi.

Of the top five states represented in the freshman class’s out-of-state total, only Texas (second) and California (fifth) do not share a border with Alabama. Texas produced 367 enrollees, and California produced 206.

At the other end of the spectrum, North Dakota and Wyoming have the smallest representation in the freshman class, each producing one enrollee. Montana and South Dakota have no representation in the freshman class.

This data puts Alabama just ahead of Auburn in out-of-state enrollment in the fall 2013 freshman class, with Auburn drawing 37 percent of its freshman class from other states. The majority of Auburn’s out-of-state students also came from Georgia.

The University of Georgia fell behind Auburn and Alabama in out-of-state representation in its fall 2013 class, boasting only 15 percent of the new enrollees.

The University of Alabama has been growing ever since Robert Witt, now chancellor of The University of Alabama System, assumed the role of UA president in 2003 and launched an “ambitious plan for academic growth and achievement,” according to the Office of the Chancellor website. The plan would position “UA as one of America’s fastest growing public universities.”

Since the plan’s initiation, the undergraduate out-of-state enrollment has increased 236 percent. Scholarship allowances have also increased in the past nine years, increasing 329 percent from the $24,630,219 set aside in 2004.

Now, the Budget Office’s 2011-2012 Financial Reports specify $105,643,511 in scholarship allowances for the fiscal year ending Sept. 30, 2012. That’s up 18 percent from fiscal year 2011.

Aside from scholarships, the University spends an average of approximately $227 per incoming freshman in recruitment, with the recruitment and operations budget for fiscal year 2013 set at over $1 million.

According to Undergraduate Admissions’ staff listing, the University has at least one recruiter assigned to every state in the nation. Five admissions representatives facilitate recruitment functions in Florida, along with four each in Texas and Georgia and two each in Tennessee and Mississippi. Alabama is assigned nine recruiters. Mary Spiegel, associate provost and executive director of undergraduate admissions, said the University did not track the quantity of scholarship funding directed to students from specific states.

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