Administrators say Fall 2001 freshman enrollment is right on target
Administrators say Fall 2001 freshman enrollment is right on targetNovember 30, 2001Kelly Homan Rodoskikahoman@syr.edu
Freshman enrollment at Syracuse University is down slightly for the Fall 2001 semester–and that is something that University administrators are pleased with.
The total number of freshman and transfer students, 2,945 (2,627 freshmen and 318 transfers) falls in the middle of a range–2,925 to 2,975–that is optimal for maintaining a consistent enrollment level within the undergraduate population, according to David C. Smith, vice president for enrollment management.
“We are right on target with where we want to be,” Smith says.
“Our goal is to meet our enrollment projection, not to see how many students we can take,” says Chancellor Kenneth A. Shaw. “We are a much stronger institution at this size; bigger, in our case, does not mean better. So, I am delighted that we met our goal for the year, and even more delighted that we didn’t exceed it.”
Last year’s freshman class was 2,798, just over 100 more students than this year. Smith says that administrators made a decision to shrink the freshman class to keep the overall undergraduate enrollment steady. Along with that downsizing came a modest increase in the quality of the freshman class. The middle 50 percent of this year’s class had SAT scores between 1,130 and 1,300.
“I like this year’s numbers very much,” says Vice Chancellor and Provost Deborah A. Freund. “The key to being better and even more student centered is to have fewer and more able students to whom we can deliver the highest quality academic experience. A smaller number of students leads to a more personalized and stepped up academic climate.”
The total number of full- and part-time students on all campuses of the University, including Main Campus, University College, the Division of International Programs Abroad (DIPA) and extended and branch campuses– is 18,093, down from 18,201 last year. Undergraduate enrollment this semester is 10,702, down slightly from 10,740 last year.
The breakdown of full- and part-time main campus undergraduates this semester, by college or school, includes the following: School of Architecture, 328; The College of Arts and Sciences, 3,275; School of Education, 354; L.C. Smith College of Engineering and Computer Science, 844; College of Human Services and Health Professions (includes the former College for Human Development, College of Nursing and the School of Social Work) 613; School of Information Studies, 473; School of Management, 1,216; Newhouse School of Public Communications, 1,256; and the College of Visual and Performing Arts, 2,108.
The total number of full- and part-time graduate students enrolled this fall is 4,886, down 3 percent from last year’s number of 5,032. In the College of Law, 767 students enrolled, down slightly from 782 last year.
Overall, enrollment in University College, SU’s continuing education division, is about the same as last year, says UC Interim Dean Charles K. Barletta. The college, which launched four new bachelor of professional studies (BPS) degree programs this year, saw a 3.2 percent gain in undergraduates (287) and a 3 percent decrease in graduate students (549) this semester. The college has already met its target for admission to the BPS programs this year, and expects that number to rise due to the college’s continuous admission policy.
Barletta says the recession that the country is now in could affect UC’s future enrollment numbers in a few different ways.
“Locally, we have a number of companies who are laying off a significant number of people, which could translate into adults seeking part-time educational programs for career change and skill upgrade,” he says. “We are also seeing local companies reducing their educational assistance benefits and training, which could reduce enrollment.”
Total campus enrollment peaked at SU in 1989 at 22, 195, with 12,577 undergraduate students. In early 1992, the University launched 33 initiatives aimed at moving SU toward becoming the nation’s leading student-centered research university. As one example, class sizes were reduced to facilitate more contact between students and faculty, both in and out of class. Enrollment decreased slightly each year until 1999, when a slight upward swing took place.