For the first time in its 116-year history, Elizabeth City State University has topped the 3,000 mark in student enrollment.
The Rev. Henry B. Pickett, chairman of the ECSU Board of Trustees student affairs committee, announced at Tuesday's board meeting that 3,025 students are currently enrolled for the fall semester.
That number is higher than both last fall's enrollment of 2,667 students and an earlier fall 2007 projection of 2,838 students. It also meets a goal set by former university chancellor Mickey L. Burnim, who sought to have 3,000 students enrolled by 2008.
Burnim's goal was in fact in response to a challenge by Molly Broad, the former president of the University of North Carolina System, to raise enrollment to the 3,000 mark by next year.
Not content with reaching that goal, however, Burnim's successor, current Chancellor Willie Gilchrist has called for the university to reach the 4,000 mark.
"We can't rest on our laurels," he told trustees during Tuesday's meeting. "We still need to work."
Graduate enrollment up too
The university has also more than doubled its goal for graduate student enrollment. ECSU has 118 students enrolled in graduate programs this semester. University officials had set a minimum goal of 55 graduate students.