University auditorium filled with studentsUnlike many colleges and universities across the country that are seeing increased absences and decreased enrollment, the University of Illinois Chicago has set a record for the largest enrollment in its history for the seventh consecutive year.

UIC is the second largest university in Illinois and is the largest university in the Chicago metropolitan area. It is also the city’s only public research institution and has 16 academic colleges that serve more than 34,000 undergraduate, graduate, and professional students.

The record for largest enrollment in its history this year was driven by an increase in the overall number of undergraduate enrollment, which rose by 1.6% to 22,279 students. An additional testament to the number of newly admitted students is the population diversity. Of the class of new freshmen at UIC, the number of Black students who chose UIC jumped 25%, the number of Latino students rose 19.5%, and the number of Asian students rose 17.2%. There was also a 25% increase in the number of first-time graduate students, which had decreased in previous years.

Last year, UIC enrollment topped 33,518 students – beating the previously set record of 33,390 students. The growth follows major capital projects and improvements from last year. Because UIC champions the role of Chicago’s leader in public higher education, workforce, development and research, these efforts were made to accommodate the ethnically rich and culturally diverse population its staff serves.

In response to the pandemic, UIC altered the admission process to allow option reporting of SAT and ACT test scores. This, in tandem with the efforts of last year, spurred unprecedented rates of enrollment for the college. As a result, UIC continues to be an example of the acclaim of Illinois schools.