griffon edge new student orientation

New students and their mentors play an icebreaking game in the GISC during Griffon Edge 2022. The number of new students this fall is up a little more than 4 percent over last year.

Sept. 8, 2022–The number of new students entering Missouri Western State University for the 2022 fall semester is larger than the year before by a little over 4 percent. 

“The growth we’re seeing in new students is an indication that, as I’ve said many times, we’re moving forward with clear direction and sure purpose,” said Dr. Elizabeth Kennedy, Missouri Western’s president. “Our academic offerings are in demand, and the increase in new students will establish momentum for us to build on in future years.”

Members of the Class of 2026 come from 19 states and seven countries. Missouri Western continues to be a popular choice in northwest Missouri: the top five counties for new students are Buchanan, Jackson, Andrew, Platte and Clay. The incoming freshman class is 58 percent female and 42 percent male, in line with national trends, although the number of first-year male students is up significantly, about 28 percent. 

Missouri Western’s residence halls are a popular option for incoming freshmen, with more than 400 living on campus, up 12.7 percent from a year ago. Housing and Residence Life is offering three Max Living/Learning Communities to provide support, help develop academic skills and connect residential students with each other and staff: Living Out Leadership, First-Gen Scholars and Career Exploration and Opportunities.

First-week enrollment this fall is 3,952, compared to 4,404 last year.  “With significantly smaller incoming classes the last couple of years due to COVID-19, it’s not surprising that our total enrollment number is smaller than a year ago,” said Dr. Melissa Mace, vice president for student affairs and enrollment management. Enrollment totals will be finalized on the official census date in the fourth week of classes.

Some undergraduate programs are seeing an increase in the number of students enrolled in courses compared to last year, including Construction Engineering Technology, Manufacturing Engineering Technology, Accounting, Finance, Digital Animation, General Business, and Recreation Sport Management.

Graduate enrollment is also positive, showing a 2.25 percent enrollment increase over last year’s numbers. Graduate programs in Education, Criminal Justice, and Sport and Fitness Management are experiencing increases in the number of students enrolled in program courses. 

Missouri Western State University is a student-centered learning community preparing individuals for lives of excellence through applied learning. Missouri Western is located in St. Joseph, Mo., and is committed to the educational, economic, cultural and social development of the region it serves. Visit