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YSU's enrollment decline continues

Published: Wed, February 6, 2013 @ 12:08 a.m.



RELATED: YSU education college gets high marks

By Denise Dick



Youngstown State University’s enrollment decline continues with a 5.3 percent drop for the spring semester compared with spring 2012.

YSU’s head count for the semester that started last month is 12,966, compared with a count of 13,698 last spring. Of this semester’s total, 79 percent of those students are full time, or 10,184, compared with 10,724 full time last year.

“Spring is always an indication of fall,” said Ron Cole, a YSU spokesman. “Fall was down, so it’s not a surprise that spring is down as well.”

Fall 2012 enrollment slipped 5 percent to 13,813, compared with fall 2011’s 14,540.

Jack Fahey, vice president for student affairs, agreed.

Another factor in the drop from fall semester is the change in the university’s conditional admission policy. Some of those students who struggled last semester didn’t return for the spring.

“We had 336 students identified as conditional admission, and 114 of those — about 34 percent — didn’t make it through ...,” Fahey said. “Typically those students would have stayed for at least a couple more semesters.”

The change meant that more students were conditionally admitted.

Students are admitted under conditional status if their high school grade-point average is below 2.0 or their composite ACT is below 17.

Previously, conditional admission came into play for students with both a below-2.0 GPA and a below-17 ACT.

The university knew when it implemented the conditional admission change that it would see some of those students not return for the spring, he said.

“We thought it was the right thing to do both for the university and for the students,” the vice president said.

He said indications are that the downward enrollment trend of the last couple of years will turn around this fall.

One of those indications is the increase in the number of campus visits by prospective students. Most of those who visit decide to attend YSU, Fahey said.

The university revamped its open-house system into Crash Days where recruits spend time on campus visiting classes and meeting professors in their prospective fields of study. The university also beefed up its marketing efforts and began targeting more areas of Western Pennsylvania.

“We’re doing all kinds of things that we think are going to turn it around,” Fahey said.

Though YSU has seen a decrease, Kent State University posted record-high spring enrollment, up 161 students, or 0.4 percent to 40,559 students compared with spring 2012’s 40,398 students.

“Student success is our top priority at Kent State University, and it shows in our record spring enrollment,” Kent State President Lester A. Lefton said in a news release. “Kent State is clearly a first-choice university where students receive a world-class education, and we are committed to seeing each of them reach the finish line to graduation.”

Kent State University at Trumbull in Champion reported a decrease this semester. The campus has 3,141 students enrolled this spring, down from a record 3,255 students last spring.

This marks the third-consecutive year the campus saw spring enrollment top 3,000.

“With the improving job prospects, we expected our enrollment to decrease slightly,” Kent Trumbull Dean Robert Sines said in a news release. “I believe more individuals are seeing the advantages to getting a university education. We certainly would like to see more residents getting a degree but are still pleased to be providing our citizens with an opportunity to be better prepared for employment in the future.”


1getitright13(12 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

All of you who choose to write comments on education related articles and how the budgeting works need to do some research, and possibly take a class in writing.

If you look at national statistics, the number of kids in high schools across the country is down. Not the number or percentage of people graduating from high school but the actual number of individuals in high school is down and is expected to be down for quite some time. This is going to cause a natural decrease in enrollment that everyone who works in higher education anywhere has been aware of.

Ohio State schools are and have been in budget nightmares for years with increased state cuts every year. If you look at The Ohio State University and the article written about them just last week, you will see that they are $2.8 BILLION in debt.

Tuition and fees increase to cover increasing costs, just the same way everything else costs more in life. Have you noticed the increased prices in your groceries over the past couple of years? Same concept.

The "Mansion" that all these millions of dollars were spent on that every idiot who posts comments on this website about was funded through grant money. When an institution receives grant money it needs to be used exactly for the purpose it was received for and NOTHING else. If all of you have something to complain about, go get a degree in higher education administration, 10+ years experience, become a president of a university, and make some change. Now, if that doesn't suit you, go get some advanced degrees, build up your status in the community and get appointed to the board of trustees and become a decision maker. Until then, try to learn something about the process rather than posting comments where any common sense that may have prevailed has been lost.

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2Ytownnative(1121 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

Was that the article that mentioned YSU was deeper in debt (percentage wise) the OSU ?
I think it was a 413% increase ? The money is not going to come from staff salary cuts so raising tuition is just about the only option. As far as the spending there it's Youngstown STATE university, not a private college so there is tax money involved. I could go to YSU almost for free using my GI bill and would feel guilty spending that kind of money even tho its not my money

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3UNCOMMONSENSE(627 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

getitright13 if your facts are right, why do Kent State, Akron and Ohio State Universities indicate increases in student enrollment? Where are the advanced degrees to see this decrease in high school enrollment and adjust accordingly??

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4getitright13(12 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

University of Akron Head Counts Fallen Fall 2011 - Fall 2012


Ohio State at the Columbus Campus:
Fall 2011: http://nces.ed.gov/collegenavigator/?...

Fall 2012: http://www.osu.edu/osutoday/Statistic...

Kent State University out the three you mentioned, Uncommonsense is the only one with an increase. And if you read into any of Kent's press releases they have changed their recruiting practice and increased efforts in marketing and recruiting much like YSU is now starting to do.



Yes, these are facts, and they are very easy to look up.

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5getitright13(12 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

And information on declining high school population: http://www.voxxi.com/high-school-grad...

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6AnotherAverageCitizen(1194 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago


People on this board are not interested in facts you gave them. They just want to bash anything here locally. They will not consider the number of students just in the city of Youngstown has been in decline for years. Some how KSU Trumbull decline in students was caused by YSU Unions and President Anderson.

Since Gov kasich said 200,000 jobs will be created from fracking, many high schoolers are looking toward that and not college.

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7DSquared(1788 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

If your GPA is under 2.0, and your ACT is under 17, then you have NO BUSINESS being at a University. You should be at a trade school or apprentice program of some type. Stop wasting tax dollars on these"faux-students". College is not for everyone, contrary to what the President declares.

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8kurtw(1828 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

Y.S.U.- U.S.P.S.- Those letters belong together because the same factors are causing the decline of both: it's called COMPETITION.

Universities are no longer in complete control of higher education, as the postal service is facing increased competition from private companies: U.P.S. and Fedex.

Also, most students are interested in acquiring as directly and quickly as possible the knowledge needed for job advancement. You can do that with Community Colledges, on-line schools, etc.

Universities, on the other hand, want to teach their students a lot of things that are nice to know but not absolutely essential. It's a way of keeping their faculty busy.

P.S.- Also, the "mansion" may have been supported with private grants- but what about maintenance over the years- what about that- who gets to pay for that- the taxpayer who else.

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