Forum set to show recruitment tips, ideas for prospective students

Cassie Buchman, Editor in Chief

Following a year of updates from Eastern’s Office of Enrollment Management, a recruitment forum will show the campus how to inform more perspective students.

According to January’s enrollment management update, freshman admit numbers are higher than they have been in ten years for this point in time.

A bulk of high school seniors’ students decisions of where they are going to college are made during the spring semester. May 1 is the National Decision Day.

“Part of the reason why we’re having the forum right now is we have an abundance of freshmen admitted in comparison to last year significantly more,” Norman said. “That’s a good increase of them.”

According to Norman, preparing the campus to help student make an informed decision, especially when it comes to Eastern, will be important.

“It’s going to take the whole campus to help those students find their fit, whether they’re concerned about cost, the program, we’re trying to get them that information so they can make the right decision,” he said. “I just want to make sure the whole campus is involved in helping those prospective students find that fit.”

There was also an enrollment forum last year, though this differs from this year’s recruitment forum as the one on recruitment will be more focused on the current circumstances the university is in. Norman said it would take a look at where the university is currently at, remind those present of Eastern’s brand and take a look at what other academic departments are doing to engage prospective students.

“There’s the potential for us to substantially exceed freshman enrollment, but we need your help,” Norman said.

Four departments, biological sciences, English, the school of business and elementary education will have individuals to talk about what they are doing to recruit.

In elementary education, they are very active on social media, with one professor who is willing to help others set up Facebook and Twitter accounts for recruitment purposes, Norman said.

The Lumpkin School of Business has a student ambassador program, while the English department sends out surveys to prospective students so it can personalize communications it sends out. In biological sciences, they are creating relationships with local high schools and conducting classroom experiences.

By showing enrollment funnels and the forum, Norman said he will be able to show the impact these things are making in each area.

He also plans on showing the numbers, and how freshman and transfers have both increased in their applications.

The forum is set for 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. Friday in the Doudna Lecture Hall. When the presentation is done, the floor will be open to have people talk about what their ideas are in their own department.

Those interested in attending the forum can RSVP here:

During the vitalization project, originally proposed by Eastern President David Glassman in 2016, different workgroups made recommendations for programs in various areas around campus, including enrollment.

Some of enrollment recommendations have been put in place. One of these includes getting a new web developer.

“Everybody is pretty ecstatic on that hire. It’s great to have those extra resources,” Norman said. “It was huge for us to get a web developer replaced. We had one, now we have two and everybody is pretty ecstatic on that hire.”

Norman said it is great to have these extra resources, as prospective students are looking for application and enrollment materials that are more mobile- friendly.

“We can’t do that without a web developer,” Norman said,

According to the vitalization project’s website, a plan that is currently in progress includes expanding staffing and resources to increase the capacity for prospective international and graduate students.

A completed recommendation includes investing in developing the “best practices” for recruitment to ensure that admissions counselors are ready before the enrollment cycle starts.

New training has been created and developed to train admissions counselors and will occur twice a year, as stated by the vitalization project’s website.

As for Spring 2018’s enrollment, Norman said official numbers will go out the week of Jan.22, but there will likely be an increase in transfers, domestic graduates and freshmen, with a decrease in international students.