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May 1st Now and Then: What’s Changed in the World of College Admissions

Until this year, the first of May was the date when admissions professionals could finally see a relatively clear picture of what their incoming fall classes would look like. By May 1st, most students had made commitments and paid deposits. Admissions leaders, in turn, were then able to finetune their enrollment projections and budget requirements for the next academic year.

In 2020, however, COVID-19 has left schools uncertain of how to predict yield and concerned about retaining current students. On top of that, the National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC) recently changed its code of ethics, allowing colleges to more aggressively pursue applicants who have already been accepted elsewhere.

Shared insights

With hundreds of colleges extending their deposit deadlines and students everywhere — including many who have already paid deposits — reconsidering their plans for the fall, what can institutions do to better predict and protect their fall enrollment numbers?

Liaison’s on-demand webinar, “The New May 1st: Yield and Retention in 2020,” helps answer that question by examining the strategies two higher-ed enrollment leaders are successfully using to stay engaged with applicants during every step of the process.

Hosted by Liaison’s Executive Director of Enrollment Management Consulting (and a former vice president of enrollment management) Dr. Suzanne Sharp, the webinar’s panel also includes Dr. Christopher Smith (Executive Director, Enrollment Management, Marketing & Financial Aid at Kansas State University Polytechnic Campus) and Dr. Joe Parisi (Vice President of Enrollment Management at Central Methodist University).

During this webinar, they share their insights and answer questions about:

  • How the significance of May 1 for forecasting enrollment has changed this year.
  • Why colleges and universities have no easy way to quickly know which students are going to walk away from their deposits.
  • The importance of “doubling down” on student outreach over the summer.
  • The strategies they use to tailor communications to individual students, including the use of variable print.
  • The strategies they use for retaining current students.

Are you certain that your admissions office is doing everything possible to successfully plan for this fall’s new and returning students?

To learn more about what you need to know, watch “The New May 1st: Yield and Retention in 2020” now.

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