Scannell & Kurz Enrollment Management Blog

Saying “Here’s How” rather than “You Can’t” - Monday Musings
I wanted to call our blog readership’s attention to an article that was in a recent NASFAA newsletter because I thought it was particularly helpful at this time of year when financial aid offices (and admissions recruiters) are having conversations with families about aid packages. The article was titled 5 Steps to Take When Students Appear at Risk of Over-Borrowing and was written by several aid officers. Here is the link to the article: In a nutshell, the article suggests ways that professionals can talk to incoming (or current) students realistically about the financial implications of enrollment decisions without making decisions…Read more

Athletic Spending, Part 2 - Monday Musings
My colleague Kathy Kurz’s recent post on athletic expenditures inspired me to look at the issue on a local level. Not long ago, the sports section of my hometown newspaper included an article about expenditures on athletics at the local university, which happens to be my alma mater. The article pointed out that my school consistently ranked at or near the bottom of the conference in dollars spent on athletics. (To be fair, the writer pointed out how competitive some of the teams have been, even with smaller budgets.) But more importantly, in comparing athletic expenditures, the article failed to take into account differences in enrollment among the institutions. Wondering how different the ranking of expenditures might look if based on cost…Read more

Value Drivers in the College-Choice Process - Monday Musings
At the Council of Independent Colleges Presidents Institute in early January, S&K's Jim Scannell and Bob Sevier (Sr. VP, Strategy - Stamats) heard a number of presidents mention a need for a greater understanding of not only their ability to set their price, but also the factors that should be considered when setting their price. In response, Bob and Jim decided to write a series of short blog posts on tuition pricing and related topics. Their goal - “to provide a bit more clarity on key issues related to pricing, so college and university leaders can have more confidence as they set their pricing strategy.” These observations will appear here over the next several weeks, as well on the Stamats website: Value Drivers…Read more

Athletic Spending - Monday Musings
As Division I men’s basketball gears up for the start of March Madness tomorrow, I find myself wondering why, in the midst of all the discussions colleges are having about how to balance their budgets by diversifying their enrollment portfolio, shifting the balance between full time and adjunct faculty, considering merging or sharing resources with other institutions, outsourcing to save costs, etc., NO ONE seems to be talking about reducing expenditures on athletics or athletic scholarships. Now I will be the first to admit that I am not a huge sports fan. I watched the commercials during the Super Bowl, not the game. And when I fill out the March Madness brackets, the only time I have won was when I used our client list to decide who would…Read more

Reading the Tea Leaves - Monday Musings
This is the annual hand wringing season. Admissions, financial aid, and enrollment leadership have (or will have shortly) made the offer of admissions to the class of 2018 applicants and now it is time to wait, watch, and worry whether enough or too many of the chosen ones will enroll. What are the most helpful metrics right now for trying to estimate how many will eventually make that decision to enroll? Certainly, understanding whether the profile of the admit pool mirrors that of last year, or is different, is a good place to start. Is it bigger or smaller? Are the need distribution and quality profile comparable or different in significant ways? Has the geographic profile changed? Does the admit pool show a higher proportion of out-of-state…Read more