For the third consecutive year, Hope College has enrolled a record number of students.

The college has enrolled 3,112 students this fall, up from the 3,068 of a year ago and the 3,035 of the fall of 2002. The college has set records for overall enrollment in six of the past seven years.

"We're gratified by the high interest that students and their families have shown in Hope," said President James E. Bultman. "Our large incoming classes and strong student retention reflect a growing awareness and appreciation for Hope's exceptional academic program, vibrant Christian dimension and caring environment."

This year's total includes the second-largest number of first-time students in the college's history, 781. The previous high, set last year, was 811 first-time students.

The student body is comprised of 1,195 men and 1,917 women from 47 states and territories and 33 foreign countries.

The enrollment by class, with last year's class in parentheses, is: freshmen, 806 (835); sophomores, 803 (719); juniors, 643 (697); seniors, 784 (745); and special students, 76 (72).

Students transferring to Hope from other colleges and universities total 60, compared with 53 in 2003. There are 106 students in off-campus programs, compared to 93 last year.

The largest representation is from Michigan with 2,274 students, followed by Illinois, 342; Indiana, 109; Ohio, 63; New York, 51; Wisconsin, 38; Minnesota, 27; California and Iowa, 17 each; New Jersey and Pennsylvania, 16 each; Missouri, 12; and Virginia, 10.

Foreign countries represented in the student body include: Albania, Bahrain, Belgium, Bosnia, Bulgaria, Cameroon, Canada, China, Denmark, El Salvador, Ethiopia, France, Germany, India, Japan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Korea, Kosovo, Liberia, Mexico, Nepal, the Netherlands, Pakistan, Romania, Russia, Sudan, Sweden, Tajikistan, Trinidad, the United Kingdom, Uruguay and Vietnam.

Hope College was chartered in 1866 and is affiliated with the Reformed Church in America (RCA). The college offers courses in 80 majors leading to a Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Music, Bachelor of Science or Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree.