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Archive for Thursday, July 17, 2008

Athletic success expected to help increase enrollment

July 17, 2008

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Kansas University officials are optimistic that recent academic and athletic success will help bolster enrollment.

Although the Kansas Board of Regents forbids Kansas schools from discussing early enrollment numbers until mid- to late September, the school is anticipating a growing freshman class.

"We definitely expect to have an increase in enrollment because of the athletic successes," said Lisa Pinamonti Kress, KU director of admissions. "We hope those successes reflect well on the university."

Pinamonti Kress said KU did see an increase in applications during the 2007-08 school year. Between the 2004 and 2006 fall semesters, freshman enrollment dropped by 354 students, from 5,937 to 5,583.

The University of Missouri announced in June that it would stop accepting fall freshman applications for the first time in its history, which has led several other Big 12 schools to take a close look at what they're doing to boost new students.

As of July 1, 5,864 freshman had applied for enrollment at Missouri.

Christian Basi, MU spokesman, said school officials pointed to increasing out-of-state recruitment efforts and the success of its football team last year.

"When your athletics does well, people will often look at the academics behind it," Basi said.

Other Big 12 schools also reported encouraging early numbers for the upcoming semester. University of Colorado spokesman Bronson Hilliard said CU had seen a record number of predicted freshmen this year, with 5,750 expected.

Pinamonti Kress said no precedent has ever been set for KU to stop accepting applications.

KU would have to approach the regents and see what options would be available for such a situation, she said.

"It's not a problem we've ever really had to deal with," said Kip Peterson, a regents spokesman.

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