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A 'more personal' outreach at KSU



Published: Fri, September 20, 2002 @ 12:00 a.m.



Another open house in the community is planned for November.

By DENISE DICK

VINDICATOR TRUMBULL STAFF

CHAMPION -- The director of the enrollment office at Kent State University's Trumbull Campus attributes an increase in enrollment to more personal outreach and marketing efforts.

Fall enrollment increased to 2,306 students, a nearly 6 percent jump from the fall 2001 numbers. Enrollment at Kent Trumbull has increased 35 percent since 1990.

"Our outreach has changed," said Sherdene Simpson, director of the office of enrollment management. "It's more personal."

Rather than leaving recruitment to the enrollment management office, the full campus -- including staff and faculty -- get involved, she said.

The campus also conducts student phone-a-thons and targets high school students interested in particular fields on specific days.

Kent's regional campuses have been marketing their two-year associate degree programs, and those programs, which include technology fields, are popular among students this year, she said.

Liberal arts programs also draw many students.

Recruitment efforts also have included taking the campus into the community.

Last spring, staff and faculty conducted an open house at the Rebecca Williams Community Center in Warren. A similar session is planned for November.

"We understand that not everyone has transportation, but they still may want the information," Simpson said.

Others involved

Faculty, representatives from the financial aid office and people knowledgeable about accommodations for students with disabilities attended the open house session.

The campus tries to highlight its faculty at the open houses and other recruitment efforts.

Faculty members from science programs, for example, set up experiments at the open house.

"The faculty talks to prospective students about programs, the curriculum and what they can do with a particular major," Simpson said.

About 75 percent of Kent Trumbull's students are from Trumbull County. Some students complete an associate degree program at the Champion campus. Some take classes there for two years and then complete their major at the main campus. Students in some programs, such as business management and nursing, may complete their four-year degrees at the Trumbull campus.

Although a complete breakdown of different segments of enrollment isn't complete, Simpson said the area that realized the biggest enrollment increase was the 21-and-younger age group.

Enrollment hit 12,050 at Kent's seven regional campuses for an all-time high, the university said. Combined enrollment at the main campus and regional campuses topped 35,170 for a 4 percent increase over fall 2001 enrollment.




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