NORMAL, Ala. (WHNT) — As of Friday, Alabama A&M University (AAMU) has reported the largest enrollment total in its history.

Over 6,600 students are enrolled for the fall 2023 semester, which the university says is a 10% increase over the previous academic year. That enrollment number is supported by a growing number of new and returning students and a 5% increase in retention of first-time, full-time students.

AAMU’s record enrollment numbers go against a national trend. According to data from the National Student Clearinghouse, nationwide undergraduate college enrollment dropped 8% from 2019 to 2022, with declines occurring even after colleges returned to in-person learning.

“As the reputation of our University continues to grow and the return on investment is proven by our students and alumni, we expect to attract more talented students to The Hill,” AAMU President, Dr. Daniel K. Wims said. “This is an exciting milestone as we march toward our 150th anniversary in 2025.”

AAMU also said it enrolled the largest incoming class in its history, with 2,002 freshmen and 2,567 total new students. That incoming class is made up of 91% African American students and 60% women, and includes a record number of new international students, the university says.

It also welcomed 105 dual-enrollment students thanks to a partnership with Huntsville City Schools.

Vice President of Student Affairs Braque Talley says these numbers are a ‘signal of the strength’ of what AAMU has to offer for students and families.