The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus


SMU attracts students from out of state, country

All roads may not lead to SMU, but a whole bunch of them do.

This year SMU turns 100. In those 100 years, students from across the nation and from beyond oceans have decided to come to Dallas for college.

Jessica Noel, senior psychology and sociology double major from San Diego, wanted the “get-away-from-home” experience.

“I wanted to know what life was like outside of California, and I’ve definitely gotten that in Texas,” Noel said.

According to Stephanie Dupaul, the associate vice president for enrollment management at SMU, “SMU is very much a national and global university, given the number of out-of-state students who would like to enroll here.”

Dupaul went on to say that SMU’s out-of-state population increased this year, and 55 percent of the first-year class is not native to Texas.

Noel sees a big advantage to attending school in Dallas.

“Dallas isn’t so big that you can get lost in the shuffle, such as Los Angeles or New York City,” she said. “But at the same time, it is large enough to provide all of the opportunities that come with living in a big city.”

Sophomore Scarlet Gray from Shreveport, La, also noted the opportunities.

“I could see myself staying around (Dallas) and working somewhere for engineering and at the same time get my graduate degree here (at SMU), because they make that so easy for you here,” she said.

Gray also said that her favorite thing about SMU is although it is a big college and competing nationally, it is still small enough that you know people on campus.

“Even though it’s huge, it remains close-knit between people,” Gray said.

Sophomore journalism major Clara Lemon from Los Angeles, said she picked Dallas because it was a new place.

“I really wanted to go out of California and experience another place,” Lemon said. “I think SMU’s really awesome, and I’m really glad I came here. It’s an up-and-coming school, even though it’s not top among Ivy Leagues.”

SMU does not only draw students from the U.S. According to Dupaul, there were 611 international applicants this year—311 more international applicants than last year. These applications came from 80 countries around the globe.

“Of the 10,678 degree-seeking graduate and undergraduate students currently enrolled at SMU, 1,045 are international,” Dupaul said. “For undergraduates, 6.87 percent of our 6,150 undergraduate students are international.”

Claudia Graves, the director of international student and scholar services, attributes this draw of students to many factors. The desire to study in a city that is international, the strong economy and the markets and culture degree are just a few.

“We sell very well that we are an international city, and then we get to sell the kind of schools that we have,” Graves said.

Graves also believes the job market is one of the biggest advantages of going to school in Dallas.

“Dallas being one of the most growing cities … I think that’s a big plus,” she said.

Yee-Ching Liu is a sophomore biological science major from Taipei City, Taiwan who said came to Dallas because her aunt and uncle live here. She heard of SMU from her uncle, who got his graduate degree here.

Liu said one advantage of going to college in Dallas is that it would ultimately be cheaper than other big cities.

“In New York, living, housing, tuition are all more expensive than here,” she said.

SMU is a local school with a far-reaching, global ambition.

More to Discover