Applications for Fall Semester Up 65 Percent

Late last month, Southern Virginia University surpassed 2,500 applications for fall semester 2010, which represents a 65 percent increase over last year and a 20 percent increase over the all-time high in 2005.

Of the projected incoming freshman class, more than 100 have grade point averages above 3.75. To date, the average GPA for incoming freshmen is 3.34, up from last year’s 3.2.

“Prospective students are definitely taking a closer look at what Southern Virginia has to offer,” said Brett Garcia, dean of admissions. “That has meant not only a record number of applications and acceptances but also a record number of denials.”

Unlike many universities that have cutoff dates for applications, students can apply to Southern Virginia right up to the beginning of the semester if there is sufficient space in classes and housing. That means the precise size of the student body for fall semester is not known, but university officials expect it will end up above 700, or at least 50 students higher than fall semester 2009.

In 1996, when Southern Virginia first adopted a Latter-day Saint environment, there were just 74 students. The university plans to grow to serve between 1,000 and 1,200.

“We won’t always be able accept applications so late in the year,” Garcia said. “But we know that it’s very helpful to many of our incoming students, including returning missionaries.”