UNLV President Optimistic as New Year Begins - 8 News NOW

UNLV President Optimistic as New Year Begins

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LAS VEGAS - Thousands of UNLV students are moving into their dorms this week. After years of cutbacks at the university, the outlook is improving.

Many students and staff are excited about what this new school year will bring. UNLV officials expect their largest group of incoming freshmen in 20 years.

They say more than 1,600 students are estimated to live on campus at one of four residence halls this fall. That is approximately 500 more students than last year. All residence halls will be full.

UNLV's Honors classes have doubled in size. Because of the increase in freshmen, UNLV has reopened one of its old dorms.

UNLV President Neal Smatresk says he is confident this school year will be a successful one. He says the budget has stabilized, and UNLV recruiters have hired new faculty members.

Since this is the largest freshmen class in 20 years, Smatresk predicts an increase in tuition revenue which the university plans to spend to create new programs at UNLV.

"I don't think it's our plan to restore programs that we've cut. I think it's our plan to say we've got a really strong foundation, and we're going to make it even stronger," Smatresk said.

He says the university instituted a new block scheduling program for freshmen that guarantees them at least three classes they can use towards graduation.

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