Considerations in Evaluating Your Institutional Discount Rate

Douglas E. Clark Vice President of Enrollment Management Ferrum College John W. Dysart President The Dysart Group, Inc. Discount rates are always an important topic for evaluation and discussion at private colleges and universities. The institutional discount rate is simply the amount of unfunded institutional aid as a percentage of gross tuition revenue. For example, if a college is spending $4,500,000 in institutional financial aid against a gross tuition figure of $10,000,000 then the discount rate is 45%. (Note: The traditional, generally accepted method for calculating the institutional discount rate includes only tuition revenue). Institutions constantly monitor their rates, seek […]

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Wesley College: An Extraordinary Turnaround

John W. Dysart President The Dysart Group, Inc. Although alumni today often boast about how Wesley, a predominately liberal arts college in Dover, Delaware, affiliated with the United Methodist Church “refused to die,” the fact is that the 133-year-old institution was almost moribund when President Scott D. Miller assumed the presidency in 1997. As strategic enrollment management consultant to the College throughout the last decade, it has been an inspiration to watch Wesley’s transformation since Dr. Miller’s infusion of business and marketing savvy, coupled with his infectious enthusiasm and high energy, propelled Wesley’s future to possibilities unimagined  10 years ago. […]

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The Democrats Take Control of Congress: Prepare for Changes

John W. Dysart President The Dysart Group, Inc. The Democrats have taken control of both houses of Congress and higher education changes are expected. While most of the prospective news looks promising for enrollment administrators, one change could turn into a financial burden. The good news is talk of increasing the maximum amount of the Federal Pell Grant for the first time in more than four years. The current maximum award is only $4,050 and some are advocating an increase perhaps as high as $5,100. Such an increase would certainly benefit needy undergraduates but would also assist colleges and universities […]

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A New Direction at Ferrum College

John W. Dysart President The Dysart Group, Inc. The latest recruitment, financial aid and enrollment numbers have been finalized for the year and Ferrum College is shining! This small, liberal arts college located in Ferrum, Virginia has been a constant in the Commonwealth for almost a century, but the last two years have brought the institution to the forefront and people are taking notice. While many competitors in the state and the region are struggling with recruitment, discount rates and retention, Ferrum College stands out from the crowd. Presidential leadership and strong support from the Board of Trustees have served […]

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How Did It Go This Year?

John W. Dysart President The Dysart Group, Inc. We have completed another year in enrollment management. The following questions are designed to make readers evaluate their results this cycle with a critical eye. This is not intended to be a comprehensive list applying equally to all colleges and universities. The intent is to encourage thought and examination of outcomes. Did you generate significant increases in admission applications this year? The number of admission applications is so important. More applications present an opportunity to increase new student enrollments if that is part of your strategic objective. More applications provide an opportunity […]

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Conditional Admits and the Academic Enrichment Center

Shirley E. Arnold Director Academic Enrichment Center Brevard College What is an Office of Admission to do with applicants who do not fit exactly into an institution’s matrix of scores (SAT/ACT/GPA) for automatic acceptance? No doubt, some schools feel they have the luxury of rejecting all such students out of hand. But others of us are more likely to give such students a second look – not simply because we are tuition-driven and want the numbers, but also because we recognize that the right kind of college education can awaken the skills and talents that have lain dorment in such […]

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Retention and the Academic Center

Shirley E. Arnold Director Academic Enrichment Center Brevard College One of the hot button topics on college campuses today is retention! Today’s college students love to flirt with transferring, as many of them do not have a strong commitment or allegiance to the college at which they matriculate. Students seem to change colleges on a whim: a girl friend talks her boy friend into coming to the school she’s attending after their first semester apart; another student leaves due to a (perceived) lack of campus social activity; yet a third student never intended to stay in the first place; etc. […]

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Personalization!

Robert Waggoner Vice President Premier Collegiate Communications Successful recruitment has become an arms race. Colleges and universities are continuously seeking to find better ways to communicate with prospective students. The personalization of communication with prospective students has evolved from individualized direct mail and specific messages based upon student interest to tailored web experiences. Well, you have to see the latest in personalized communication. Variable digital printing is the next phase. Imagine the ability to send color, picture postcards to students in a manner that personalizes the name and message. The options are virtually unlimited. You can specify the picture, the […]

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An Extraordinary Enrollment Transformation in Columbus, Ohio

David Archibald Vice President for Marketing and Enrollment Ohio Dominican University John W. Dysart President The Dysart Group, Inc. Dr. Jack Calareso was appointed President of Ohio Dominican College in 2001. He immediately set a vision for the institution to grow the enrollment, increase the number of residential students, improve academic quality and better control institutional financial aid expenditures. Total enrollment at Ohio Dominican University has increased more than 50% in the ensuing years. Institutional financial aid expenditures have stabilized and become predictable despite the significant growth. Net revenue has increased dramatically. The academic quality of entering students has increased […]

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