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University Of Central Florida Expects Enrollment Increase This Fall Despite Coronavirus

Photo: UCF

As UCF students return to classes Monday amid a pandemic, enrollment is up. That’s despite more than 75 percent of classes taking place online.

UCF administrators expect fall enrollment numbers slightly higher than last year, which was about 69,500. Concerns over coronavirus have moved most classes online with only about a quarter of instruction taking place in person.

“There will not be as many students taking classes on campus because we have limited and reduced the occupancy in all of our classrooms,” said UCF’s Maribeth Ehasz, vice president of Student Development and Enrollment Services. “Students have returned to the area and they will be using the services that we have available on campus.”

Only about 25 percent of classes and labs will take place on campus, with limited seating capacity. Typically, the busiest hours on campus brought some 18,000 students. Now it’s expected the on-campus population will peak at only 3,000.

Summer enrollment last semester was up 7 percent over the previous year and set an all-time record. UCF said 92 percent of freshmen are returning to continue studies this year.

“We’re probably going to have more students enrolled [this year] than we did last year. That is a good sign that students are interested in continuing and progressing to complete their degree,” said Ehasz.

UCF is requiring all on-campus students, faculty and staff to wear masks and fill out a symptom self-checker before visiting. Students living on-campus are tested for COVID-19.

To limit possible travel-related spread on campus, all classes will transition to online after the fall Thanksgiving break toward the end of the semester.

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Brendan Byrne

About Brendan Byrne

Space Reporter and 'Are We There Yet?' Host

Brendan covers space news for WMFE, everything from rocket launches to the latest scientific discoveries in our universe. He hosts WMFE's weekly radio show and podcast "Are We There Yet?" which explores human space exploration. Brendan is a native Floridian, born and raised in Broward County. He moved to ... Read Full Bio »