By Denise Dick
While undergraduate enrollment at Youngs-town State University slipped this semester, the university saw an increase in the number of graduate students.
Graduate enrollment increased to 1,203 students this fall from 1,157 in fall 2012, according to a 14th-day enrollment summary from YSU’s Office of Institutional Research and Policy Analysis.
YSU President Randy Dunn in a meeting earlier this month with Vindicator editorial writers and a reporter pointed to the increase in graduates as a bright spot in enrollment. Undergraduate enrollment fell 3.1 percent from fall 2012.
Jack Fahey, vice president for student affairs, attri- buted the graduate gain to increased marketing, moving the processing of graduate admissions from the graduate school to the admissions office and attending 25 graduate- college fairs that university personnel previously hadn’t attended.
Moving the processing of applications to the admissions office improved efficiency.
The admissions office is equipped to handle the graduate applications as it’s what personnel there do, Fahey said.
“They have the modern technology to be able to track each person in terms of where they are, what they need and work with the students to get everything in on time and make the decision to get admitted,” he said. “It helped the process and increased the time of decision making.”
The growth was seen in several colleges.
“The higher percentage of growth was in the [College of Creative Arts and Communications],” he said. “The new master’s in professional communication is starting to do well.”
Nursing and social work, both in the Bitonte College of Health and Human Services, and education also continue to do well.
“The MBA program is doing very well also,” Fahey said.
He said the university continues to make efforts to increase the graduate ranks.
“It was our last two years that we tried our first real structured effort trying to recruit in graduate school, and it’s starting to be successful,” Fahey said. “Each year, we learn a bit more and try to do things a bit better.”