Working Together for Enrollment Success
Dear Kent State University Faculty, Staff and Students,
If you have seen our newly released enrollment figures for fall semester, you are aware that while our numbers declined slightly, our enrollment figures were much better than anticipated and much better than many other similarly sized universities.
Much of the credit goes to the hard work and diligence of our Division of Enrollment Management, which rose to the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic and provided the needed guidance to stem our losses.
With enrollment being the lifeblood that sustains our university, we must continue to emphasize this important work. Therefore, I am excited to announce that over the next several months, Kent State will be developing a new strategic enrollment plan that will involve every facet of our university life.
This comprehensive plan will engage the mission, vision and values of our institution, align them with our academic and co-curricular programming and coordinate all with the student life cycle — from initial interest to degree completion and beyond.
To accomplish this, we will need input, guidance and assistance from many of you as we enlist all areas of campus and all facets of institutional planning. We know that every department, every division and every service that our university provides become part of the entire student experience, and therefore are embodied within the enrollment process.
This strategic plan will require our campus community to address enrollment differently than we ever have before and with increased collaboration among all of us.
Enrollment challenges are coming on many fronts. Strong demographic changes signal a decrease in the pool of traditional college-aged students; students and families have concerns of rising student debt; and we face unique challenges serving the diverse communities of our multicampus system. These areas must be addressed with a revitalized, coordinated effort.
While we strive to meet our enrollment targets, we also have the equally important task of supporting our students so they may successfully attain their degrees and reach their goals. Our diverse student body and graduates will always be our most vital lifeline.
The strategic planning will be led by a university Enrollment Governance Committee that will be co-chaired by our Interim Senior Vice President and Provost Melody Tankersley, Ph.D., and Vice President for Enrollment Management Mary Parker, Ed.D.
Faculty, staff and students will be invited to participate on various committees throughout the planning process.
There is much work to be done, yet I am confident that all of us working together will create a plan that truly sets Kent State on a course for enrollment success for many years in the future.