Record freshman class checks in at Cal Lutheran

DIVERSITY—Students from around the globe come to study at California Lutheran University. Courtesy photo

DIVERSITY—Students from around the globe come to study at California Lutheran University. Courtesy photo

Cal Lutheran University is hosting its largest freshman class ever, with nearly 700 enrolled for fall.

The first-year students and 250 new transfer students began the four-day new student orientation Aug. 25 on the Thousand Oaks campus

The group of nearly 1,000 new students began classes Aug. 29 with the rest of the traditional undergraduate students.

More than 50 new students in the Bachelor’s Degree for Professionals program attended their own orientation and started classes Aug. 27 in Oxnard, Thousand Oaks and Woodland Hills.

Among the new undergraduates are 42 international students from 28 countries, a more than 50 percent jump from the number of countries in recent years.

Some students are from countries that haven’t been represented at CLU before or recently, including

Israel, Mongolia, Syria, Vietnam and Zimbabwe.

The freshman class is more diverse than last year’s. More than one in three first-year students are the first in their families to go to college. More than half are of ethnicities that are traditionally underrepresented in colleges.

Total undergraduate enrollment is expected to be about 3,000 students, a high mark for the university.

For the first time, opening convocation has held over the weekend, allowing parents to attend after moving new students into the residence halls.

The change for the opening convocation is one of the ways the New Student Orientation program has been altered this year to put academics at the forefront.

A new session will focus on academic differences between high school and college, and a student-faculty social will give new undergraduates a chance to connect with many professors and their faculty advisers.

Many longtime traditions remain, including painting the CLU rocks on Mount Clef Ridge and You Got Served, in which the freshmen took part in Thomas Fire recovery work in Ventura.