Fisk

Enrollment at Fisk University increased for the third straight year this fall, the Nashville-based historically Black university reported this week.

According to preliminary figures, there are 771 students on campus this fall, a 19.5 percent increase from the 645 who attended Fisk in fall 2013. Student enrollment in the fall of 2012 was 613, up from 544 in the fall of 2011.

Among the school’s population are 222 full-time first-year students and 47 students who transferred to Fisk. And 155 students, or 82 percent of last year’s incoming class, returned to Fisk this fall.

“The Fisk Renaissance is truly underway!” university President H. James Williams said in a statement.

That rebirth came after a legal battle that lasted almost eight years, according to The Journal of Blacks in Higher Education. In 2012, the university won a lawsuit allowing it to share its art collection with the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville, Ark. Fisk netted $24 million under the sharing agreement after paying $6 million in legal fees, and those funds were used to bolster the institution’s finances.

“Our high retention rate demonstrates that the investments we have made in our academic programs, student life activities, and infrastructure, are generating positive results,” Williams said. “Fisk will continue to support our regional and national economic needs by developing new programs and continuing to expand our highly regarded STEM, business, and humanities offerings.”

Founded in 1866, Fisk is one of the highest-ranked HBCUs in the nation and renowned for producing more African-Americans who go on to earn doctoral degrees in the natural sciences than any school in the nation.