HSU looks at the big picture for enrollment


By Charlotte Rutigliano

The days of generalizations may be in the university’s rear view as various department’s throughout Humboldt State aim to start writing personalized letters to prospective students due to a drop in enrollment this past term.

This is part of a plan the university has created to start focusing more on prospective students who applied and turning them into current students. Director of Admissions Steven Ladwig said every student needs to have a relationship with someone on campus before attending to make them feel more comfortable once they’re here.

This plan has been put into place with the hope that it will boost enrollment for the 2017-2018 school year. According to Nicholas Conlin, coordinator for Orientation and New Student Programs, enrollment only dropped this last year. There were about 200 to 250 fewer students than the university was hoping for.

Graphic by | Charlotte Rutigliano

The drop in enrollment was not a drastic one, and HSU was not the only California State University to see this drop.

“There were six CSU’s who didn’t meet enrollment numbers this term,” said Ladwig. “Chico, Fresno, Monterey Bay, San Bernadino, San Francisco, and Sonoma.”

The slight drop in enrollment last term didn’t affect the number of impacted majors [majors that have more students than the program accepts.] Additionally, the number of visitors to campus was not impacted.

HSU is known for its science programs with the most sought after majors being biology, botany, environmental resources engineering, wildlife and zoology. This past year however, both the social work and environmental management & protection departments became impacted as well.

John Panting, lead admissions counselor, said that there hasn’t been a decline in the number of tours given but the number of visitors does depend on the time of year, saying that November through January typically have less visits.

“In the beginning of February is when the number of visitors really starts to ramp up,” Panting said.

HSU, in an attempt to identify the contributing factors hired John Capaccio as Associate Vice President of Enrollment Management. Carpaccio’s role is simple —  to increase enrollment without lowering admissions standards.

Graphic by | Charlotte Rutigliano

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