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Historical Enrollment Statistics from 1877  

The following is from a news flash on October 30, 2006:

ROCKY FLASHBACK . . .100 years ago this week: State University has 800 students
"The 800 mark has almost been reached in registration at the University of Colorado. A conservative estimate of the enrollment for the year can be easily placed at 850. Three hundred and thirty new students have entered. Of these, 66 have had college work elsewhere and enter with advanced standing. One hundred and twenty-four of the new students are women." (end news flash)

The University of Colorado opened its doors on September 5, 1877, with 44 students and one instructor. Today, the University of Colorado is a three-campus system with general campuses at Boulder, Colorado Springs, and the Denver and Health Sciences Center in Denver. Visit the University of Colorado System's 125th Anniversary site.

The Boulder Campus, also home of the president's office and the central administration of the three-campus system, is located 30 miles northwest of Denver in the city of Boulder. The history of enrollment on the Boulder campus shows some interesting trends (see graphs) and is posted here with the intent of giving a historical perspective. The original source of these data is unknown and only the numbers after 1988 can be verified. The following should be taken into account when using the numbers.

  • All numbers are "headcounts."
  • The numbers for 1877-1963 were compared to those in Glory Colorado. Although the numbers didn't match exactly, they were close and retained comparability.
  • The 1877-1907 counts do not include the State Preparatory School, which was a part of the institution during that time period.
  • The 1938-1960 undergraduate counts included duplicates (registered in two schools, etc.). We have "unduplicated" these figures by computing undergraduate counts as total minus graduate.
  • The Medical and Nursing School moved to the Denver Campus in 1942.
  • Pharmacy moved to the Health Sciences Center at Denver in 1991-1992.
  • Figures for 1945-1950 probably include war-related activities such as special Japanese language training.
  • Figures for 1960-61 and 1961-62 are estimated from published numbers that appear to include duplicated full year counts. We have "unduplicated" these figures by dividing by two.
  • Since 1962 we have used fall census headcount as "official total enrollment."
  • Starting in 1988, we show only Boulder degree-seeking students (non-degree students and students rostered on the Colorado Springs or Denver and Health Sciences Center campuses have been removed).


Download Excel spreadsheet with enrollment numbers

ODA - L:\ir\reports\time\enrl1877.xlsx

Last revision 05/02/16

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