More high school seniors in Southern Illinois choosing Murray State

It’s never easy to watch your child move away to college, but more parents in southern Illinois are sending their kids to western Kentucky.

Murray State University says so far, they’ve seen a 12% increase in applications from Illinois. But, most of that average comes from our Local 6 area.

  • Williamson County +18 percent (+8 applications)
  • Franklin County +42 percent (+11 applications)
  • Massac County +41 percent (+17 applications)

Although McKinley Hawkinson is close to graduation, she still remembers how excited she was to get accepted into Racer Nation. “It was just a sense of relief, knowing that I got to go to the place that I wanted to be,” Hawkinson said.

Hawkinson isn’t surrounded by former high school classmates from Williamson County, Illinois. She decided to go a little farther. “A lot of them went to Southern Illinois, SIU Carbondale, or John A. Logan,” she said.

But more students from southern Illinois are choosing a Kentucky education. Fred Dietz, Murray State’s associate vice president for enrollment management, says it’s because of things like the new scholarship model and outreach efforts. “If you were to look at Murray State and draw a radius of about 50 to 75 miles, we really focus on schools in those areas,” Dietz said.

Fourteen percent of Murray State students are from Illinois. If you’d like to learn more about this new scholarship model, click here

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