PSU opening day features 'most diverse' freshman class

PLATTSBURGH - The State University of New York at Plattsburgh is welcoming its most diverse freshman class yet, according to this fall's college admissions statistics.

Even though it's slightly smaller than last year's, the 1,015-member fall freshman class exceeds the university's enrollment goal of 975 students.

"They represent less than half of the overall number of applications," said SUNY Plattsburgh president John C. Ettling.

The number of total undergraduate applications, in fact, was up by 10.3 percent over last year, yet the college has capped enrollment to ensure small class sizes and a quality education.

"We're trying to limit the size of the student body here because we believe that there is a point beyond which things start to come apart; they start to deteriorate," Ettling said.

In addition, more than 20 percent of SUNY Plattsburgh's incoming freshmen come from minority backgrounds. It's a number that's been steadily climbing as well - compared to about 17 percent in 2009 and about 16 percent in 2008.

Among the 2,830 students moving into SUNY Plattsburgh's 12 residence halls was Jenn Kane, a political science major from Somers.

"I would like to get an internship in the state government, and, eventually, I'd like to work on Capitol Hill," she said. "I picked Plattsburgh because it was really affordable, and I think I have a good chance to have opportunities here."

Welcoming Kane and other new freshmen were residence hall advisers like Nicholas Cappon, a senior political science major from Rochester. Cappon said he's loved his SUNY Plattsburgh experience because of the diversity of opinion and the support that students get from the academic staff.

"There are plenty of opportunities to make something of yourself here," he said.

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