Thursday May 15, 2008

Campus Report May 15, 2008

As of May 5, UD had logged first-year admission deposits from 2,030 students: more than 250 students above budgeted enrollment.

As of May 5, UD had logged first-year admission deposits from 2,030 students — more than 250 students above budgeted enrollment, reports UD's vice president for enrollment management.

That means that with typical summer attrition, the fall class is likely to be at least 100 students larger than the goal of 1,775, says Sundar Kumarasamy.

But the news gets better. Selectivity also has increased, with UD's acceptance rate down 9.7 percent, from 82 percent of applicants to 74 percent. More than 11,500 people have submitted applications for the entering class, a record he has attributed to UD's strong academic reputation, personalized communication to prospective students, expanded direct mail efforts, a communication campaign with guidance counselors nationwide and an online multiple-institution application program.

All divisions have exceeded their net deposit goals, and the wait list exceeds 800.

Academic quality has risen as well, with the average ACT score up two-tenths of a point to 25.7 — a very significant gain, Kumarasamy says.

The incoming class also appears to have significantly greater diversity, both racially and geographically. Deposits from Hispanic, Asian and Native American students are about level with fall 2007's first-year enrollment, but the number of black students is up by one-third to 73 deposits. Applications from international students are up 81 percent to almost 500, reports Tricia Penno, communications coordinator in the Center for International Programs. As of May 13, UD had accepted 76 international students - exceeding the goal by 65 percent, Penno says; by May 13, UD had received 14 deposits from students in Canada, China, the United Kingdom, Ghana, Indonesia, Korea, Kuwait, Lebanon, Mauritius, Saudi Arabia and Togo.

Of all the students who have submitted deposits, 43 percent are from out of state - an important statistic, Kumarasamy says, because with the population of graduating high school seniors dropping in Ohio, UD must reduce its dependence on in-state students. The goal is to eventually have a 50-50 split.

"The key thing these numbers show is that access, affordability and quality are all in balance according to our mission," he said.

"Our goal is that we bring in the most talented students who fit the UD mission — students who will most benefit from what UD has to offer," he says, adding that when students are academically prepared and well-aligned with UD's Marianist philosophy, they thrive. By clearly communicating UD's values and charism in marketing materials, the University is attracting students who are more likely to be a good fit.

"We are telling students who we are," he says. "We wanted to make very clear, in introducing ourselves to the market, that our core is our mission. We're making clear what a Marianist education is and how it is different."

Sundar Kumarasamy, 937-229-3756; e-mail sundar@udayton.edu