students at Griffon Edge

Griffon Edge Aug. 24-27 gave many of the nearly 800 new students at Missouri Western this fall a chance to connect with faculty, staff and fellow students and become familiar with the campus and its resources. Pictured is the New Student Convocation.

Sept. 7, 2023–Nearly 800 new students are enrolled in classes at Missouri Western State University this fall, as first-time students or as transfer students. Overall enrollment is up nearly 1 percent higher than the same time last year, for a total of 3,824 students.

“We continue to be an attractive choice in the region,” said Dr. Elizabeth Kennedy, Missouri Western’s president. “Students recognize that our applied learning mission and student-centered learning community will equip them for success.”

Most of the 618 first-time students come from the state of Missouri, with Buchanan, Jackson, Andrew, Clay and Saint Louis as the top feeder counties. Overall, the first-time students come from 17 states. The top declared majors are nursing, psychology, management, marketing, exercise science and computer science.

About 48 percent of the incoming new students self-reported that they are the first in their family to attend college, a significant increase over last year.

“To help our incoming first-generation college students, we piloted a program this summer called Kickstart,” said Dr. Laura Reynolds, provost and vice president for academic affairs. “Kickstart was a day-long, optional program to provide students with additional information about how to successfully navigate their college experience.”

Seventy-five percent of students who participated in Kickstart said it was very helpful, and 100 percent said they would recommend it to their friends who aren’t in college yet. 

There are 178 new transfer students attending Missouri Western this fall. The community colleges sending the most transfers to Missouri Western are Metropolitan Community College, North Central Missouri College and Johnson County Community College. 

Graduate enrollment is 204, a 12 percent increase over the 182 enrolled at the same time last year.

Enrollment totals will be finalized on the official census date in the fourth week of classes.

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