Comets Landing: New Students Arrive at UT Dallas

One of the largest-ever freshman classes at UT Dallas began moving into the University’s two residence halls on Tuesday in preparation for the start of fall classes on Wednesday, Aug. 24.


Orange-and-green-clad students and staff from across campus were on hand to offer welcome bags and food to new students. Upperclassmen and faculty helped lug suitcases and furniture into new housing while also providing helpful advice about navigating college life.


Although he’s still close to his home and family in Carrollton, Texas, Trent West, who plans to major in computer science, said he’s excited about meeting new people and experiencing the independence that comes with living on campus.


“Living on campus is something I’ve been looking forward to for the last two years,” he said. “Just getting out of the house will be nice.”


West’s mother, Dawn, said she was sad to see him leave home, but she knew immediately that UT Dallas was the right place for her son.


“One thing I said to Trent after we went to orientation was that he had picked the perfect place for himself,” she said. “I felt so comfortable sending him here. Orientation was warm and welcoming, and I thought, ‘What a great place!’”


Final enrollment numbers will not be available for some time, but UT Dallas is expected to break several records this fall, including a new total student enrollment number, according to John Walls, associate vice president for communications. 


“We’re particularly pleased this will happen while we maintain our high admission standards,” he said. “UT Dallas’ average SAT score for entering freshmen is typically among the highest of any Texas public university.” 


The growth the University is experiencing has been carefully planned to serve prospective new students as well as faculty, staff and the community at large. 


“Among the reasons for our growth are the new programs we are offering in engineering, management, math and science, as well as the continued strong interest in arts and technology and in brain and behavioral sciences,” said Dr. Hobson Wildenthal, executive vice president and provost. “We are also enjoying greater recognition of our academic excellence, the opportunity to offer expanded research opportunities for students and higher rankings in many national surveys.


“The addition of the freshman residence hall program has been extremely popular and seems to be what younger students and their parents desired,” he added. “And thanks to our very generous private supporters, our campus has become a much more lovely and lively place to be, with shade, seating and water features that make it a pleasure to traverse.”


Besides the largest freshman class, fall enrollment milestones are expected to include:

  • The largest number of freshmen living on campus.
  • The largest number of students overall living on campus.
  • The largest enrollment ever, with the final figure expected to easily top 18,000 students.

Media Contact: Jenni Huffenberger, UT Dallas, (972) 883-4431,
or the Office of Media Relations, UT Dallas, (972) 883-2155,
Read this story on the UT Dallas website. 
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