ECU announced enrollment task force
(Jan. 30, 2008)
East Carolina University has announced the formation of a task force on strategic enrollment management to develop goals and plans that will determine what its student body will look like in coming years.
“We have been the fastest-growing public university in North Carolina for the last five years,” Chancellor Steve Ballard said. “Clearly students and parents all across the state are finding more and more to like about East Carolina, and this is key to our success. Our growth is also illustrative of our historical commitment to access and opportunity.”
Ballard said that as the university moves forward, it must examine “how much growth we can accommodate and still do everything possible so that each student is successful. That is our legacy over the past 100 years.”
“This is an appropriate time to take a close look and make sure that our growth is focused in a way that ensures that we are maintaining access and properly serving the people of North Carolina,” the chancellor said. “We are beginning our second century, we have completed a new strategic plan for the institution, and the UNC Tomorrow initiative has established goals for all the UNC system institutions. Our enrollment planning will take all these factors into consideration.”
ECU’s enrollment has grown from 20,577 in the fall semester of 2002 to 25,990 in the fall of 2007.
Ballard said the new task force, which will begin meeting next month, will include members from the Board of Trustees, faculty, students and administration. It will be led by Dr. Judi Bailey, a former president of Western Michigan University and Northern Michigan University, who oversees the enrollment management enterprise, including the admissions, financial aid, and registrar’s offices.
“The task force must take the lead in helping us decide such critical questions as how large our student body should be and what are the proper ratios of undergraduate students to graduate students and on-campus students to distance-education students,” Ballard said. “We must also develop a better answer to the question of what the appropriate admission standards for ECU should be.”
Bailey said it is important for the university to increase its efficiency and its level of customer service in admissions, financial aid, advising and all other student services. A number of initiatives are already under way in those areas, including searches for new leaders in the financial aid and admissions offices and enhanced advising services, including the addition of a student-learning center that will offer tutorials, study skills and time-management sessions.