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Articles: Enrollment & Retention

Transitions in senior academic and administrative staff can have nearly as much impact as a new president.

14 percent of students started their postsecondary education in a community college, then transferred to a four-year school and earned a bachelor’s degree within six years of entry.

If colleges choose to simply shutter older structures and let them sit unoccupied, it's important to remember that honesty is the best policy during campus tours, says David Hawkins, executive director for educational content and policy for the National Association for College Admission Counseling. (GettyImages.com: FozzyB)

The combination of the campus expansion boom of the past decade and the recent flattening of enrollment rates continues to create a significant backlog of deferred maintenance at many institutions, says report.

Trends in campus chapels mirror those of places of worship in general: New and renovated spaces are becoming more tech-enabled and multifunctional, with added emphasis on creating a gathering place for an entire community, regardless of religious denomination.

solidarity—About 300 students participated in an Amherst College protest against President Trump’s proposed policies regarding undocumented immigrants. (Takudzwa Tapfuma for The Amherst Student)

President Donald Trump has made immigration reform a centerpiece of his young administration. New policies include banning travelers from seven Muslim-majority countries from entering the U.S., and a plan to deport millions of undocumented immigrants.

Source: “International Branch Campuses - Trends and Developments 2016,” Observatory on Borderless Higher Ed

International branch campuses continue to offer American colleges and universities opportunities in branding, enrollment and research. And overseas countries, as luck would have it, are often as eager to host as U.S. universities are to set up shop. 

Many second-year-experience programs work with only a few thousand dollars in their coffers. Leaders of these initiatives forge partnerships with other departments to curb spending and help students pick majors, choose the right study abroad program or connect with faculty through advising and social events.

Researchers believe more universities need to join the growing number of schools focusing resources on sophomores.

Traditionally, student success programs have focused primarily on transitioning first-year students from home to college. But now more higher ed leaders are realizing that to retain students and help them make informed decisions, they must expand these efforts to sophomores.

To keep Stanford front and center in the minds and hearts of its graduates, the university’s alumni association—like other institutions—is investing time on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.

The largest capital project in Central Michigan University’s history, a new four-story, 170,000-square-foot Biosciences Building is a science showcase—right down to the numerous glass-walled labs that facilitate observation of ongoing research.

BEHIND THE SCENES—Taylor Hale, a GW college senior from Detroit, Michigan, filming live during the college’s Facebook Live tour.

The George Washington University live-streamed a campus tour via Facebook Live in December. It’s the first time the platform’s live-video streaming service has been used for that purpose, administrators at GW believe.

Recent lawsuits have alleged that certain colleges breached the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA), which states employers that sponsor retirement plans have a fiduciary responsibility to prudently manage those plans on the behalf of their employees.

Eight prominent universities—including University of Pennsylvania, Duke, Emory, Johns Hopkins, Vanderbilt and others—were hit with separate lawsuits in August 2016 alleging the institutions mishandled their employee retirement plans.

NEW OPPORTUNITIES—Current and former inmates of the Fishkill Correctional Facility north of New York City graduate in 2015 from a Nyack College program that has a 100 percent success rate in keeping its students from being sent back to prison. (Babita Patel)

In a recent off-Broadway production of West Side Story, directed by the provost of Nyack College, located north of New York City, the student who played Officer Krupke had once been arrested for impersonating a police officer.

MONTCLAIR, New Jersey—Montclair State had been a university for only a few years when Susan Cole took over as president in 1998. She wanted the job—her second presidency—because she saw vast, untapped potential on the campus of 12,000 students. She also felt certain that she could, pretty quickly, ensure the institution lived up to its new name.

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