October 25, 2023

Palm Beach Atlantic University Marks 55-Year Anniversary with Largest Incoming Enrollment

students from PBA's journalism program, with the largest incoming enrollment

PBA News

At a time when many colleges and universities are grappling with a significant decline in enrollment, Palm Beach Atlantic University (PBA) stands out as an exception.

This fall, PBA welcomed the largest incoming class in its 55-year history, defying the prevailing trend. A total of 844 undergraduates joined the PBA student body this fall, bringing the university’s overall enrollment to 3,875. This number marks a two-year increase in enrollment for the institution.

Dr. Nancy Brainard, vice president of enrollment management, commented that PBA’s growth is rooted in its commitment to PBA’s mission to equip students to grow in wisdom, lead with conviction, and serve God boldly. “We are honored to be preparing students from around the globe with training that allows them to approach their profession with godly character and a servant’s heart.”

Dr. Debra A. Schwinn, president of Palm Beach Atlantic University, agreed. “PBA’s unwavering commitment to our Christ-first mission and the continued expansion of our programs to address the growing needs of businesses offers a unique attraction to students and their families,” she said. Dr. Schwinn also emphasized that the university’s comprehensive curriculum, student-centric services, and state-of-the-art facilities are instrumental in the enrollment trends and are a direct result of the collective dedication of those who have wholeheartedly embraced the university’s mission. “We are extremely grateful to our faculty and staff, whose commitment to our students goes beyond the classroom and our many donors and friends whose partnership with us plays a pivotal role in the reputation of PBA.”

Of the 844 new undergraduate students, 678 are freshmen and 166 are transfer students. Based on students’ self-reporting, among new students, 39 percent identify as white, 23 percent identify as two or more races,18 percent as Hispanic, 10 percent as Black or African American, two percent as Asian, and a little over two percent of students’ ethnicity are unknown. This mirrors the diversity of the wider student body. Of the total student body, 49 percent identify as white, seven percent identify as two or more races, 18 percent as Hispanic, 10 percent as Black or African American, two percent as Asian, and four percent of students’ ethnicity are unknown. The PBA student body comes from 48 states and Puerto Rico and 83 countries of origin, including students with F1 visas, permanent residents and dual citizens. 

PBA offers more than 100 different programs and pathways as part of its wealth of attraction. The university expanded its undergraduate programs with the addition of the Bachelor of Science in Engineering, which launched in fall 2023. Undergraduate degree programs with the largest incoming enrollment include nursing, business, biology, psychology and exercise science. 

In May 2023, PBA earned AACSB (Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business) accreditation for the Marshall E. Rinker Sr. School of Business. Regarded as the gold standard of business education, accomplishment places the institution among the top six percent of all business schools worldwide. To accommodate the growing number of students interested in attending PBA, the university, in September 2022, launched the most extensive capital campaign in its 55-year history. To learn more about the campaign and how you can support PBA’s mission, visit https://www.pba.edu/give/god-sized-dreams/.

About Palm Beach Atlantic University 

Palm Beach Atlantic University, founded in 1968, is a private, Christian university, offering 100 different programs and pathways, including undergraduate degrees, graduate degrees and professional degrees.  The university has a 29-acre campus in West Palm Beach and an Orlando campus, and the 78-acre Marshall and Vera Lea Rinker Athletic Campus provides facilities for training and hosting intercollegiate sports. Sailfish athletes compete in 18 NCAA Division II and Sunshine State Conference varsity sports. PBA affirms the values that have built American society, including religious liberty and the free enterprise system. The university is dedicated to the integration of biblical principles to prepare students for learning, leadership and service. Learn more at www.pba.edu.  

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