Scannell & Kurz Enrollment Management Blog

Confessions of a New Old Road Warrior, Part 1 - Monday Musings
[Note: we occasionally ask friends in the field to act as guest bloggers. This post is provided by Michael Beseda, Vice President for Enrollment and University Communications at Willamette University. We were fascinated with Michael’s story of how he came to understand his new institution, so we asked him to share his journey with you.] On the road since 6:00am, I had already visited two schools by 9:30 and was flying across San Francisco channeling Steve McQueen in an effort to get to my next appointment at Lick-Wilmerding on time. This fall, I revisited my roots as an admission “road warrior” in an effort to better understand the prospective student market for my new institution, Willamette University, and to test my burgeoning sense…Read more

The Net Price Calculator: The Verdict Is In - Monday Musings
We are approaching the second anniversary of the deadline requiring colleges and universities to publish an online tool – a net price calculator (NPC) – that prospective students and families can use to estimate their total cost for attending the institution. Some schools are still trying to decide how useful their NPC is. Previous posts to Monday Musings have suggested comparing your institution’s NPC results to those of your competitors and paying attention to the aptness of your NPC for your target student/parent audience. More recently, schools are discovering the importance of harvesting the results of their NPC to improve their assessment of students’ interest in the institution and their probability of enrollment. Student use…Read more

Partnership: Admissions and Marketing - Monday Musings
One of the many “turf wars” we frequently observe on campuses is: “Where does marketing report and who sets the marketing agenda?" Often, the pull and tug play out between the vice president for advancement and the vice president for enrollment with the president as the referee. At issue is marketing resources – expertise and budgets. The concern often expressed is that if marketing reports to advancement, admissions and enrollment will be shorted. Conversely if marketing is part of the enrollment management organization, advancement frets that all the resources will be consumed by recruitment, admissions, and enrollments, with none left for fundraising and friend-raising. Some presidents have resolved the conflict, they think, by having…Read more

College Mergers - Monday Musings
At the end of July, Montreat College (Montreat, NC) and Point University (West Point, GA) announced plans to merge. The headline caught my eye for two reasons: 1) The former president of Montreat graduated from the same high school I did, and 2), I have been thinking and talking frequently about college mergers during the last couple of years. My hypothesis is that more mergers are inevitable. Price escalation resulting in public and political pressure, and changing demographics resulting in changes in demand, are two major forces that will cause institutions like Montreat and Point University to look first at collaboration, and eventually at merging, in order to cut costs and stay viable. For many small, medium and non-selective colleges and…Read more

Collaboration between Advancement & Enrollment Management - Monday Musings
As recently as ten years ago, S&K found the financial aid and admissions offices working at cross purposes at many institutions. In many cases, the financial aid office was focused on staying on budget; the admissions staff was focused on meeting class size goals; and no one was thinking about how to optimize net tuition revenue. Now most institutions have solved that disconnect. However, advancement and enrollment management continue to function as silos on many campuses, missing significant opportunities to collaborate to the benefit of the institution. Here are a few examples: The advancement office focuses on matching donor’s interests to institutional needs but often interprets institutional needs for scholarship support as “more…Read more