Category Archives: Enrollment Management

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5 ‘Dirty Words’ Admissions Offices Should Embrace

Chicago — Brian Wm. Niles didn’t cuss, but still a few people winced.

At the ACT’s annual Enrollment Planners Conference here on Thursday, Mr. Niles, founder of Target X, recommended five “dirty words” colleges should use regularly. (Squeamish romantics fond of quaint words like “learning,” be warned.)

Customer. Many people who work at colleges dislike the word, preferring to call students “students.” But as more Americans question the value of higher education, Mr. Niles said, institutions must…

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What’s Missing From the Merit-Aid Debate

Nashville — Merit aid has a bad reputation: Critics say that when colleges use it, they reduce the need-based aid available to low-income students.

Jon Boeckenstedt disagrees. For many colleges, merit-based aid is a necessity, he said during a presentation here on Tuesday at the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators’ annual meeting. What’s really hurting need-based aid is price increases and imprecise definitions of need, said Mr. Boeckenstedt, associate vice president for…

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Turning Financial-Aid and Admissions Staffs Into an Enrollment Team

Melanie_WeaverTraining admissions and financial-aid staff members to do one another’s jobs can be a challenge, but it can make for a smoother enrollment process for students and their families. In a guest post, Melanie Weaver describes what happened when Ohio Northern University cross-trained its enrollment staff. Ms. Weaver, the university’s director of financial aid, is scheduled to present on the topic this week at the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators’ annual meeting, in Nashvil…

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What the 6 Types of Prospective College Students Are Looking For

To maintain or increase enrollment amid overall national declines, a new report by the Parthenon Group tells colleges to go beyond students’ demographics and focus on their motivations.

Institutions recruit on the assumption that so-called traditional students (age 18 to 24) go to college to discover themselves and that adult learners (“nontraditional” students) have more career-oriented goals, says Haven Ladd, a partner at Parthenon, a consulting firm. He and another partner, Seth Reynolds,…

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Still Shopping for a College? This List Is for You

If this year is like the last few, the National Association for College Admission Counseling’s annual “College Openings Update” will be trotted out as one more piece of evidence that American higher education is in crisis.

The update, formerly known as the “Space Availability Survey,” is a list of colleges belonging to the association that are still accepting freshmen or transfer applicants, or both, for the fall. It was released on Tuesday and will be updated by the association, known as NACAC,…

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How a University Overcomes the Challenges of Holistic Admissions

Denver — Fit is a big deal at Brigham Young University, where the admissions office looks for students who share its values academically, socially, and spiritually. To select those students, the university uses a holistic process that three campus officials described here on Monday during a session at the American Association for Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers’ annual meeting.

Each applicant’s file—stripped of its grades and test scores—is evaluated by more than one reader. Re…

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Giving College a Welcoming Front Door

Maria-Moten-2014 (3)If the enrollment process at a community college isn’t well structured, new students are left to fend for themselves and might not know which options match their goals. In a guest post, Maria S. Moten explains how her college improved its “new-student flow.” Ms. Moten, assistant provost and dean of enrollment services at Harper College, a two-year institution in Illinois, is scheduled to present on this topic at the annual meeting this week of the American Association of Collegiate Registrars an…

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Affordability Tops Annual ‘Hopes and Worries’ Survey of Applicants

Concerns about paying for college reached an all-time high among respondents to a survey released by Princeton Review Inc. on Tuesday, but 100 percent of them said a college degree would be “worth it.”

In the 2014 “College Hopes and Worries Survey,” 89 percent of respondents reported that financial aid would be “very necessary” to pay college expenses. Among those respondents, 65 percent said it would be “extremely necessary.”

Additionally, respondents’ “biggest worry” changed from previous …

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Temple U. Program Will Help Students Work Fewer Hours, Graduate on Time

Graduating on time can save students a lot of money. But for cost-conscious students working their way through college, on-time graduation presents a particular challenge. The amount students can earn in a minimum-wage job covers less of tuition than it used to, and many students work long hours.

With that in mind, Temple University announced on Monday a new program that will encourage students to graduate in four years and will reduce the amount of time needy students spend on the job.

Under th…

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Grades Still Matter Most in Admissions

A majority of colleges attribute little or no importance to students’ race and ethnicity or first-generation status when reviewing applications, according to survey findings released on Thursday by the National Association for College Admission Counseling.

The findings, which appear in the group’s “State of College Admission 2013″ report, shed light on how various student characteristics influenced evaluations of grades, strength of curriculum, and standardized-test scores—the most important f…