Second Place: Pacific Lutheran University, WA


Like other institutions of higher education, PLU undergraduate enrollments overall and in STEM disciplines specifically, have been impacted by the pandemic. PLU has been trying to address undergraduate enrollment and retention during the pandemic and beyond. PLU adopted 2 enrollment initiatives to minimize financial barriers to our students, including Natural Sciences students: 1) our PLUS Year Program and 2) our PLU Fixed Tuition Guarantee Program. The PLUS Year Program was designed to allow students enrolled full-time in 2020-2021 to lessen their academic loads, delaying at least some of their courses, laboratories, and experiential learning opportunities through providing these students up to two additional semesters of coursework tuition-free. The PLU Fixed Tuition Guarantee Program was designed to ensure that tuition for the 2022-2023 incoming class of first year and transfer students remains the same throughout their undergraduate years, eliminating the passage of the rising cost of tuition to returning students and their families.

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