Who Are These People and What Do They Want?

Dr. Doug Spedaro President Premier Collegiate Communications One of the first rules of a successful marketing campaign is “understand your market.” This is true regardless of what you are selling, including the recruiting of college students. Today’s high school students have a set of personal characteristics and expectations that make them unique among any generation that colleges have tried to recruit before. Recognizing these characteristics and tailoring your admissions process to answer the unique questions, goals, lifestyle, and habits that they might have is the key to a successful year for admissions.

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Is It Time To Retire The Viewbook?

John W. Dysart President The Dysart Group, Inc. Viewbooks have been a staple of higher education recruitment for decades. Nearly every college and university in the United States publishes one. These glossy, elongated brochures are mailed to prospective students, distributed at college fairs, displayed by high school guidance counselors and handed out at admission offices all over the country. These publications have been used to provide detailed information on academic majors, athletic opportunities, financial aid, educational outcomes and more. They offer pictures of campuses and of campus life and serve as marketing tools to encourage students to enroll. They attempt […]

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Sarbanes-Oxley Five Years Later

Dr. Scott Miller President Wesley College Dr. Marylouise Fennell Senior Counsel Council of Independent Colleges Can you remember a time before “transparency” and “accountability” became household words? In fact, it’s already been five years since Congress passed the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 in the wake of the Enron and related corporate financial scandals, and although that legislation does not apply directly to colleges, universities and other nonprofits, it has profoundly influenced—some would say “transformed”— he way we now conduct business. Presidents and CFOs of more than 30 institutions nationwide have been a part of several focus/pilot groups working to adapt […]

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Increasing Deliverability While Decreasing Marketing and Production Budgets

April Clark CAS Industry experts suggest that 25% or more of articles mailed may be undeliverable. Usually these “undeliverables” are the result of incorrect or missing addresses, incomplete information or recipients who have moved. Optimizing address hygiene and cleansing mailing lists to increase the odds of successful delivery will serve to meet institutional recruitment objectives and save money. Available technology can help you minimize deliverability problems as a result of misdirected, discarded and inaccurate mailings. Using the United States Postal Service and other data sources, CAS’ list hygiene methodology, for example, can help you improve address accuracy and mail deliverability.

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The Importance of Control in Enrollment Management

John W. Dysart President The Dysart Group, Inc. Douglas E. Clark Vice President of Enrollment Manangement Ferrum College In most Principles of Management courses, students study the four basic management functions of planning, organizing, leading and controlling. At many institutions, the control function is the one where enrollment managers need to make the most improvement. The use of the term control in a management context refers to how managers measure performance, track progress towards objectives, and determine if corrective action is necessary. A well known management mantra is “What gets measured, gets done” or put another way, “What gets monitored, […]

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Spring Retention Checklist

John W. Dysart President The Dysart Group, Inc. The academic year is coming to a close and the time is right to think about retention. One of the important pieces in the complex retention puzzle is recognizing things that may be indicators of attrition. Now is the perfect time to take a look at some trends and consider corrective action. Check with the Registrar’s Office and obtain the names of currently enrolled students who have requested that academic transcripts be sent to other institutions. This is a clear sign that a student is thinking about attending another school.Contact these students […]

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Where Is Your Discount Rate?

John W. Dysart President The Dysart Group, Inc. We are arriving at that part of the cycle when expenditure of institutional aid trends have developed. You should, at this point in the cycle, have awarded at least half the number of admission applicants you intend to enroll and you should have awarded approximately 40% of your currently enrolled students. Current expenditure averages are likely to give an indication of where you will end up at the end of the cycle. Hopefully, you are tracking average institutional aid expenditures for both new and returning students. The average for your new students […]

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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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