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Archive for Tuesday, September 27, 2011

KU officials say they’re concerned about declining enrollment; fewer students on campus this fall

September 27, 2011, 12:23 p.m. Updated September 27, 2011, 3:23 p.m.

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Kansas University officials, concerned by another decrease in enrollment, said Tuesday they’re taking steps to reverse the trend.

Fall enrollment dropped 744 students, to 28,718, according to figures released by the Kansas Board of Regents on Tuesday.

The 2.5 percent drop continues a recent trend of enrollment drop-offs at the university, after enrollment increased to a record 30,102 in 2008.

The figures include numbers for both KU’s Lawrence and Edwards campuses, as well as at KU Medical Center.

“They tell me we’ve got work to do,” said Matt Melvin, KU’s vice provost for enrollment management, looking at the numbers. Some of the decline, he said, was anticipated as KU’s freshmen classes in 2009 and 2010 dropped off from previous years.

Melvin said he was pleased with the academic success and the diversity of KU’s incoming freshmen this year.

“We’re very strong in quality, very strong in diversity,” Melvin said. “We need the trifecta. We need the quantity.”

Enrollment is increasing at KU Medical Center, which reported a 2.3 percent increase. And students were taking more credit hours at KU’s Edwards Campus in Overland Park. But they were offset by declines on KU’s Lawrence campus. KU doesn’t separate the head count for the KU and Edwards campuses, and taken together, the enrollment on those campuses fell 3.1 percent to 25,448.

KU officials announced they were taking steps to address the issue.

“For KU to achieve its mission of educating leaders, we need to reverse this decline,” KU Chancellor Bernadette Gray-Little said in a prepared statement. “That’s why recruitment and retention are areas of specific emphasis in our strategic plan. And it’s why we have already undertaken initiatives to increase the number of students who come to KU ready to succeed.”

The university unveiled a new package of renewable scholarships that shows potential students how much aid they qualify for up-front, based on high school grades and standardized test scores.

Melvin said KU would be personalizing and customizing its recruitment processes more and would work to establish a pipeline to reach students and parents earlier in their careers.

A few other specific areas of students saw declines. KU enrolled only 85 new international freshmen this fall, down from 222 international students last year. Melvin said competition for international students is increasing, key KU international pipelines in China and South Korea are producing fewer overall students and KU recently added a new requirement that international students pass the TOEFL English speech and comprehension exam before they can enroll. That’s a requirement many of its competitors don’t have, Melvin said. The drop in international freshmen contributed heavily to an overall decline in the freshman class to 3,580 students.

Also, fewer students on campus are seeking master’s degrees, down 5 percent to 3,189. Many master’s degree students are seeking alternative ways to get their degree, including online degree programs and late-night classes, he said. KU has a new center looking into the university's distance course offerings.

KU and Emporia State University were the only two of the six state universities in Kansas to report drops in enrollment. ESU saw the biggest percentage decline, dropping 4.6 percent.

Kansas State University reported a 1.2 percent increase, adding 275 students, to an overall enrollment of 23,863.

Nearby Johnson County Community College also reported a slight increase of students, adding 164 students, or a 0.8 percent increase, taking its fall enrollment to 21,033 students.

Comments

Eric Neuteboom 3 years, 3 months ago

Wait...they really can't figure this out? How many times have they raised tuition? If they offered a more affordable tuition rate (or at least stopped raising the rates every year), they would not be facing this problem. It's Idiotic that they think they can keep asking - begging - for more money, more money, more money, and have people keep forking it over, mindlessly. I bet a related stat would be the rise of enrollment at JuCo's and the like.

kujayhawk 3 years, 3 months ago

Seriously, go talk to one of the economics professors if you can't figure it out.

littlexav 3 years, 3 months ago

Good point - I bet that's exactly why JCCC's total enrollment (21,000) is almost as high as KU's total enrollment (28,000 between Lawrence, Edwards, and the Med School).

MrMeowmers 3 years, 2 months ago

Um, he said that JCCC's enrollments would rise, not be higher than KU's. I hope that I'm just being cynical and that you didn't really think you were shooting down his theory with your inapplicable statistics.

chootspa 3 years, 2 months ago

If you just count undergrad enrollment, I bet JCCC already has them beat.

samsnewplace 3 years, 2 months ago

AMEN, AMEN, AMEN!! I couldn't have said it better myself. ALOT of kids/young adults are trying desperately to put themselves through school by working sometimes two jobs and trying to go to school to just to PAY for what the GSL's don't cover on tuition/book costs. I have never understood why they don't at least give the student enough funding to attend for a year. I praise God that my kids are done with that school, if you are not a sports star or not a rich person's child, good luck being able to afford KU.

Bob Forer 3 years, 3 months ago

As Eric ably points out above, it shouldn't be a mystery. When you sit back and allow the quality of your offered product to diminish while at the same time raising its price, not to mention the horrible economy, you're gonna lose more than a few customers.

Ron Holzwarth 3 years, 3 months ago

That reminds me of something that was discussed in Microeconomics or Macroeconomics, forget which, but the bottom line was that you can raise your price and therefore have fewer purchasers, but your profits will increase anyway due to the higher profit per sale.

According to the book, you should therefore adjust your pricing for maximum profits with that in mind.

P.S. The class where that is taught is offered at K.U.

George_Braziller 3 years, 2 months ago

But you also have to set that price based on what the market can bear. You can sell ten widgets for $10.00 or 15 widgets for $7.50.

Might make more per widget at $10 but you gross more when the price is $7.50 because you sell more of them. That's basic economics as well.

chootspa 3 years, 2 months ago

Ding, ding, ding. Passing the expenses to the students will only get you so far.

Cant_have_it_both_ways 3 years, 3 months ago

Reports say costs of education are 4X the costs of medical care, all things being equal. Until we get control of run away spending it will not get any better.

LogicMan 3 years, 3 months ago

How does it break down school by school? And do those trends match expected demand for graduates in each of those fields, or not?

Bud Stagg 3 years, 3 months ago

The problem I see is that they are horrible at recruiting students. My daughter is a soph. at the purple school because they actually acted like they wanted her to go to KSU. KU had their chance at Junior day and Senior day and they made about 2% of the effort KSU did to attract her to their school. My daughter was an honor roll student at Free State. Made over 3.5 gpa her freshman year at KSU. KU doesn't want students like this?

This is a fourth generation Jayhawk that is now a wildcat because she didn't think KU wanted her. I have heard this story from many, many people.

smorth 3 years, 3 months ago

Ditto - I've heard this over and over and over. My niece finally got a full scholarship offer but it was too late -- ever school in the area offered more and sooner. She went to Drake.

deec 3 years, 3 months ago

Agreed. My daughter was valedictorian at her KCK high school and the financial aid offered was less than half needed to attend. She chose Ft. Hays.

LogicMan 3 years, 3 months ago

"because they actually acted like they wanted her to go to"

Interesting. What specifically did they do? Personal visits (where and when), etc?

Bud Stagg 3 years, 3 months ago

They had student ambassadors calling and the dean called her twice.

Bob Forer 3 years, 3 months ago

I have heard the same complaint for years, mainly, that KU does very little to lure exceptional students. And it is those exceptional students whom disproportionately and positively impact the university's overall rating and reputation. I have seen very little evidence to mitigate that criticism.

Perhaps the trend is due to the continuing arrogance of the central administration, who view themselves as "the Harvard on the Kaw" and Kansas' "flagship institution." While KU sits on its hands and relishes its over inflated sense of self, K-State continues to work its butt off actively recruiting the best Kansans and providing a pretty darn good education.

And no, I am not a Wildcat, but instead a Jayhawk through and through.

thinkinganalytically 3 years, 3 months ago

Actually I have the opposite view after my son's college search last year. The Honors College at KU spent a great deal of time trying to recruit my son. He had many email exchanges, phone calls, and meetings with Dr. Wiles, the assistant director of the honors program and talked at least once with the director of the honors college and former vice chancellor Professor McCluskey-Fawcett. We attended several Honors College events for prospective and admitted students and thought the presentation was as good as any we had seen. In the end he decided to leave the state and attend one of the top five (according to US News and World Report) universities in the country, but the efforts of the KU Honors College made it a difficult decision.

squawkhawk 3 years, 3 months ago

I've experienced and heard the same. Interesting to see that KSU's enrollment was up and they are further from a major metro market (KC) than KU whose enrollment was down.

Kontum1972 3 years, 3 months ago

joe thats the same reason my son went to Kstate..KU passed over him...he graduated from Kstate with honors/scholarship/eagle scout....was recrutied by Siemans in San Francisco as a nuclear engineer...life is good for him....the young man has it going...

LogicMan 3 years, 3 months ago

"passed over him"

How, specifically? Was he denied admission? I hope not.

Mo Meza 3 years, 3 months ago

It is interesting that you call yourself a Jayhawk and then send a son or daughter to KSU. Let's me tell you my story: My daugther, a honor student in high school, honor society member, first in her class who graduated witha 4.00 GPA, decided to go to KSU because most of her friends were going there. So, we took our daugther to vist KSU and you know what, she was very disappointed and very sad to find out that they did not offer any scholarship. They told her that she needed to go before a committee to see if they would approve anything for her. So, she decided to visit KU and not only they placed her in their honor student program, but also provided her with enough scholarship that she could not decline. Today, she is an engineer, graduated with a 3.85 GPA and is working on a Master/PhD degree. All of this, thanks to KU. By the way, we are hispanics and after I talked to other parents I found out that they were treated the same way by KSU and all of their kids went to KU and graduated with sciences degrees. All of them turned out to be excellent students. So, our conclusion is that KSU does not have a diversity program that recognizes good students, especially when it comes to hispanics. Actually, I don't know if they have one at all or if they have one that can be compared to the KU diversity program. But I am glad that it worked for you. However, for me if you are african-american or hispanic, KU is the place to go. Where they treat you with dignity and respect.

sbt87 3 years, 3 months ago

First, I'd venture to guess that your daughter wasn't first in her class, if she was, she'd have gotten a $4,000 scholarship; which is guaranteed to any valedictorian from a KS high school (KU has the same guarantee.) Second, I'll also guess that beyond a 4.0 her ACT was average and probably wasn't super involved. Much of K-State's scholarships are based on leadership and involvement if you don't have a high (29+ ACT), this can all be seen be comparing scholarship offers on both the KU and K-State websites.

Second, I think it's rather bold of you to insinuate that K-State doesn't treat underrepresented students with dignity or respect. Clearly they do since their overall enrollment continues to increase, including in the amount of minority students, and they have the largest amount of Latino/a students in the state.

I understand that you're upset that your daughter (who seems to have been quite successful, and I am glad of that) didn't get the money you expected from K-State, but the racial accusations you make are completey false and unjust. In fact, looking at the K-State website for prospective students, there is a contact person for multicultural students and one particularly for Latino/a students.

samsnewplace 3 years, 2 months ago

Same scenerio here, but KU offered her a big fat nothing! She made it with GSL's and pel grants and extended loans through the Endowment Assoc. to cover the rest of the astronomical costs of that so called school. I am a mom who always told my kids if they worked hard in school, made good grades then someday they could go to college and have a better life than their mom.........as a nieve young mom, I had no idea what kind of GSL loans they would be saddled with for quite some time just for the priviledge of going to good ole KU. Makes me so sad.......

Mo Meza 3 years, 3 months ago

It is interesting that you call yourself a Jayhawk and then send a son or daughter to KSU. Let's me tell you my story: My daugther, a honor student in high school, honor society member, first in her class who graduated witha 4.00 GPA, decided to go to KSU because most of her friends were going there. So, we took our daugther to vist KSU and you know what, she was very disappointed and very sad to find out that they did not offer any scholarship. They told her that she needed to go before a committee to see if they would approve anything for her. So, she decided to visit KU and not only they placed her in their honor student program, but also provided her with enough scholarship that she could not decline. Today, she is an engineer, graduated with a 3.85 GPA and is working on a Master/PhD degree. All of this, thanks to KU. By the way, we are hispanics and after I talked to other parents I found out that they were treated the same way by KSU and all of their kids went to KU and graduated with sciences degrees. All of them turned out to be excellent students. So, our conclusion is that KSU does not have a diversity program that recognizes good students, especially when it comes to hispanics. Actually, I don't know if they have one at all or if they have one that can be compared to the KU diversity program. But I am glad that it worked for you. However, for me if you are african-american or hispanic, KU is the place to go. Where they treat you with dignity and respect.

rpank 3 years, 3 months ago

JOEHAWK,

Your comment is spot on. I grew up a Jayhawk fan for 18 yrs of my life, did well in school, extracurriculars and athletics. Even as a KU fan, KU failed to get me to view their campus, while KSU's personal connections and consistent quality communication got me to take a personalized campus visit. I now am not only attending KSU, but am a full blown Wildcat Fan. Because of the personal attention KSU paid to me, I decided to become part of the recruitment process at KSU and have recruited students here for 4 yrs. The same goes for some of my best friends.

In regards to some post about "what does K-State do?" we could talk tactics all day. But it isn't about tactics, it's about creating an atmosphere and an attitude. People don't make their decisions based solely on facts (clearly both KU and KSU have some great facts/statistics), people make decisions in large part due to emotion. Right now, KSU knows how to connect with students better. It'd be like asking "What did you do to become good friends with your best friend?" It just doesn't make any sense to look at it that way.

4chewnut 3 years, 3 months ago

The new 4 year scholarship packages are great--but a real slap to those here who would have qualified. How about working to retain those students so they don't give up or go to JCCC. Pretty demoralizing if you are a frosh this year and see what almost was within reach. KU????

down_the_river 3 years, 3 months ago

KU could start by a little honesty about the numbers they share. Let's just clear it up and say that K-State has just passed KU in enrollment. Without the KU Med and Edwards Campus, the Lawrence campus numbers appear to have dropped to 23,100 or so. Edwards campus enrollment growth in recent years: 3 percent, 7 percent, 4 percent, so the overall decline in KU's count is even more significant for the Lawrence campus than this story reports. With current trends, KU will be the number 3 choice in Kansas within 3 years, trailing both K-State and JCCC. Time for serious discussion on the hill.

Bob_Keeshan 3 years, 3 months ago

And they should also stop counting of the School of Pharmacy, because that's on west campus, and you can't really count engineering as part of the campus, either, and while they're at it just lop off the numbers from the law school as well.

I mean, as long as we're searching for "honesty" about the enrollment of a university, then they should probably only count the students on the "real" Lawrence campus, and ignore students elsewhere like the new Med Center in Salina, you know just down the road from the 1,000 or so kids at K-State's Salina campus.

Those Salina campus kids still count as part of Manhattan, right? They better, if K-State is going to "pass" KU.

squawkhawk 3 years, 3 months ago

Too much emphasis on basketball while football and, yes, academics take a back seat.

gccs14r 3 years, 3 months ago

The campus activity fee needs to be on a sliding scale depending on the number of hours one is enrolled in, up to a point. For someone wanting to attend part time, taking just one class per semester, having to cough up the full fee really raises the effective per-hour rate. Also, last I checked, the off-hours course offerings are really limited. Housing cost comes into play, too, as does the shortage of nearby employment.

Ron Holzwarth 3 years, 3 months ago

That is so true. I live right here in town, I have a very flexible schedule, and I looked into it a couple years ago. I need only about 5 classes to complete a degree, but I cannot take them all at once. Due to the incredibly high campus activity fee required when taking only one or two classes a semester for things I would never attend anyway, I cannot afford to finish my degree at K.U.

ksarmychick 3 years, 3 months ago

2.1 SEMESTER FEES Lawrence Required Campus Fees: $71.49 per credit for enrollments of 5 or less hours. For credits in excess of 5 up to 6 hours is $71.50. For enrollments of 6 or more hours, a flat rate of $428.95 will be assessed. (classes with location of Lawrence Campus)

gccs14r 3 years, 3 months ago

That's good to hear. The $428 was hard to justify for a single 3-hour class.

Bob Forer 3 years, 3 months ago

How is this good news? A full load of 18 credit hours translates to an activity fee of $24.00 per credit hour. Compare that to a non-traditional student taking just one 3 hour class who pays an activity 3 nearly three times the amount. And typically, the non-traditional student has a family or a job or both and does not partake of any of the activities funded by the fee.

gccs14r 3 years, 3 months ago

Because it used to be the full $428, so anything less is an improvement.

Steve Bunch 3 years, 3 months ago

Additionally, non-KU students no longer can take KU online courses unless they go through the process of applying for admission and take the course on a semester basis. Formerly, anyone could take a KU course, enroll any time, and have up to nine months to complete. That excludes a fair number of currently enrolled community college students and nontraditional students both in Kansas and nationwide. With an aging and declining population, the numbers game will get harder every year if KU doesn't figure out how to compete for those other students.

Steve Bunch 3 years, 3 months ago

Correction: Under the old system for online courses, students had up to six months to complete.

pea 3 years, 3 months ago

But a three month extension to nine months was easily obtained by paying $45 with no questions asked.

somedude20 3 years, 3 months ago

even crappy cereals come with good prizes, what does KU come with?

To keeps it reals for a secs though, I was rather angry that after 4 years and 40,000 k paid to da school, I still hads to pay sixtys buck to getz my darn diploma (guess that was not included in the $40,000 dollar price tag).

yourworstnightmare 3 years, 3 months ago

consumer1, look down.

A sandy beach.

Pick up a handful.

Throw it at the tide.

Steve Jacob 3 years, 3 months ago

Not a coincidence the record enrollment was the fall of 2008, after the year an Orange Bowl victory and basketball title.

Some of it also has to do with a much cheaper option 20 miles away, JCCC.

grisgris 3 years, 3 months ago

It has everything to do with it. The economy is down, money is tight. JCCC is much less expensive and only a $2 bus ride away. Why not do your core classes there and save money, then transfer to a larger university for your major work?

KU is just too expensive for freshmen. Also, didn't they just recently raise the standards for admission? I seem to remember something about that.

yourworstnightmare 3 years, 3 months ago

It sounds like these new scholarships being introduced are aimed at addressing KU's problem in courting the best students.

I have a different take on this. I think KU should raise admissions standards and not worry, in the short term, about declining enrollment.

KU should then aggressively pursue the best students from Kansas and surrounding states. Eventually, KU's reputation will improve, and it will attract more (and the key, better) students to the institution.

In the past, I agree that KU has been complacent about being "the best" when in actuality they were slipping. The above remedy should reverse this trend and bring more an better students to KU, increasing its ranking and reputation.

imastinker 3 years, 3 months ago

This isn't about ranking. It's about money. More students equals more money.

voevoda 3 years, 3 months ago

More students don't necessarily mean more money. In-state undergraduate tuition actually pays only about a third of the cost of educating a student. So more in-state students put KU more in the hole, if service capacity is increased to accommodate them (as, ideally, it should be).

imastinker 3 years, 3 months ago

KU won't get any donations from me after they used my tuition money to pay for the scholarships of needier students. That was one of the increases from 2004, IIRC. Sorry, it won't happen.

I paid my tuition, and the tuition of others, and then interest on some of those amounts for the loans taken out. I remember what it took to get rid of them and won't subsidize this kind of crap.

Student fees are out of control too, but that's the student senate at fault there.

akhmatova 3 years, 3 months ago

Student fees haven't gone up for two or three years. In fact, they actually went down a bit a few years back.

imastinker 3 years, 2 months ago

that doesn't mean they aren't already very high!

Phillbert 3 years, 3 months ago

Were you an in-state student? If so, the taxpayers of Kansas paid for about half of the cost of your education. But if you don't like it when other people subsidize a student's college education you're welcome to give that money back.

imastinker 3 years, 2 months ago

I think I've paid it back in extra income taxes paid since then.

madameX 3 years, 3 months ago

You mean the Brownback administration?

madameX 3 years, 2 months ago

LOL, I honestly thought you meant the Obama administration and was fully prepared to call you out on the silliness of that.

Kontum1972 3 years, 3 months ago

Pitt Sate is a good school too..it has grown progressively..

yourworstnightmare 3 years, 3 months ago

If by "a good school", you mean a small mediocre state college in Kansas, then you are correct.

Pitt State is not a good school, but I am sure it is cheap and easily accessible to southeast Kansans.

I hear they teach a course on riflery from helicopters.

Jonathan Fox 3 years, 3 months ago

Pittsburg State University is not nearly as big as KU but it definetely has many advantages in certain areas of study that KU is far from being able to compete with. Certain majors from Pitt State are much more valuable than KU, and there's many not even offered there. You don't seem to know anything about the smaller schools in Kansas that offer great education, for a lot less money, and often a better education, just limited to specific areas of study. Pitt State's auto and technology capabilities far exceed that of KU, same as K State's veteranary is much better than KU's, and Wichita State's Aerospace Engineering superiority, Emporia State's Education emphasis... KU has it's emphasis on medical and business and such, but lacks in many areas that are better at other Kansas schools.

Bob Forer 3 years, 3 months ago

Correction: Pitt State's auto and technoloy capabilities DO NOT far exceed that of KU. KU has none.

Also K State is the only vet school in Kansas.

thinkinganalytically 3 years, 3 months ago

Lets get a grip here. If you look at US News and World Reports rankings ( I know there are issues with this, but it is at least a place to start) for schools of education, we see the following:

18 University of Kansas (tied with Johns Hopkins and just ahead of Ohio State).

73 Kansas State University

104 UMKC

They only rank the top 200 programs nationally, so Emporia State does not show up on their list. There are no education schools in the state that are close to as good as KU, and less then two dozen that might be better in the country.

In Engineering,

95 University of Kansas

100 Kansas State University

107 Wichita State

Not a great ranking for KU, but It is hard to argue that that engineering is better at Wichita State then KU.

Graczyk 3 years, 3 months ago

There are many types of engineering. Does this ranking break out the different types of engineering (civil, environmental, etc.) or just lump them together. If it is a composite, then it could mask areas of excellence. I don't know, but would bet that WSU's aerospace program is the strongest in the state. Does KU have aerospace?

thinkinganalytically 3 years, 2 months ago

KU does have aerospace, but USN&WR did not break the ratings down by discipline.

billbodiggens 3 years, 3 months ago

They have always wanted to be an elite research university. Well, research this.

yourworstnightmare 3 years, 3 months ago

Yeah, you're right. KU will close its doors any day now (rolls eyes)...

yourworstnightmare 3 years, 3 months ago

The funny thing about this is that K State has also increased tuition, but always just slightly lower than KU (but not much).

KU tuition in $278 per credit hour, and K State's is $231.

Not much of a difference, but KU always takes the lead (and the heat) on raising tuition, and KSU follows long under the radar.

Bob Forer 3 years, 3 months ago

Not much of a difference? With a full load of 18 hours that translates to almost $900 per semester and $1,800 per year. Might not seem like a lot to you, but I am sure a lot of students and their families struggling to fund a college education would disagree with you.

yourworstnightmare 3 years, 3 months ago

Its a 20% increase. Compare to the private Baker University in Baldwin, which charges nearly triple the rate of KU.

I do agree, however, that it is sad that the State of Kansas has not funded the universities to levels that allow a low-cost education to Kansans who want one.

There is no free ride, Sych. You pay one way or another: through taxes to fund the universities, or through increased tuition.

Bud Stagg 3 years, 3 months ago

It's not about scholarships, it's about making a personal connection. KU seems to steer clear of it, KSU embraces it. They make the prospect feel comfortable with their choice. KU puts on a recruiting day and totally misses the mark in execution.

In addition I can tell you that KSU's greek system is kicking KU's by about 20% as well. Say what you want about it, but the sororities at KSU are recruiting better girls and more of them. I work with over 50 greeks systems across the country, KU needs help. That is just a symptom of the pool of prospects.

KU needs to spend more time recruiting students they want, instead of settling on the ones that want to come here.

A number of kids that were in my daughters class changed to KSU and other schools this year after one year of KU. It wasn't because they couldn't hack it, it was because KU didn't deliver. I love this school but somebody needs to get it together.

Bud Stagg 3 years, 2 months ago

They had a recruitment day and treated everyone like a number. They did a very poor job of engaging the prospects. It was "here is a list of things to see and do, have fun" Kstate actually took the time to eat lunch with you, to have a lot more speakers and activities. KU acted like "You either love us and know us and if you don't, we don't care."

gatekeeper 3 years, 3 months ago

KU/KSU - neither overall is better. KU is better if you want certain degrees. KSU is better for others. The decision on where to go to school should be based on who has the best program and where will the degree from that school take you once you graduate. It shouldn't depend on who put on the best show to get you to attend.

If you can stand to go to school in the middle of a corn field and stomach Manhattan, then go enjoy it. I visited there when in high school and made my decision very quickly when I saw they had a cow breeding facility on campus. Closest civilization was Topeka and nothing to do in Manhattan except to drink. I'd take Lawrence over cow town any day.

I think more kids from this area end up at JCCC for a couple years, then come to KU. That's the smart thing to do since tuition is so much cheaper at JCCC.

Richard Heckler 3 years, 3 months ago

JCCC draws fine teaching staff = great opportunity. I say one could well with a degree from JCCC considering the many practical choices. If JCCC goes 4 year KU will meet the stiff competition.

Spring enrollment reaches record high

02/28/11

Story by Julie Haas

Spring enrollment reaches record high

OVERLAND PARK, Kan. —Johnson County Community College’s spring 2011 semester enrollment is 19,540, up 1.6 percent from the spring 2010 total of 19,223. The number of credit hours those students are enrolled in is 160,544, an increase of 1.3 percent over the spring 2010 total of 158,493. These are the highest totals JCCC has ever recorded for the spring semester.

These figures represent totals reported to the state as of the 20th day of classes. The college’s enrollment will continue to grow as students enroll in classes that start later in the semester.

"As enrollment grows throughout the semester, JCCC usually ends the term as the largest undergraduate educational institution in the state," said Terry Calaway, JCCC president. "In this tough economy, we’re always ready to help people prepare for new jobs and new careers."

LogicMan 3 years, 3 months ago

"If JCCC goes 4 year KU will meet the stiff competition. "

KSU too. Many of their students come out of JC too I hear.

SnakeFist 3 years, 3 months ago

"JCCC draws fine teaching staff"

JCCC's fine teaching staff is over 50% adjuncts who haven't had a raise in at least 5 years, while class sizes have increased 20% during that same period.

Richard Heckler 3 years, 3 months ago

Blame it on Lew and the ticket scam crew. UK image is tarnished. Remember Lew sent UK home games to Kansas City so the Athletic Corp could drowned in money.

UMKC is rockin as is the Kansas City Art Institute.

Cost of living is less in the JCCC/JOCO/KCMO metro. Housing is less so I hear from former Lawrence people living in the KCMO metro. There is a ton of culture in the area as well. Jazz seems to be making a strong comeback.

Gasoline is up,cost of living is up,taxes/user fees are up and crime is up in Lawrence,Kansas.

Yes education is good for the soul but the jobs are not there. After attending a 4 year school do a Vo-Tech or Community College for the jobs.

gl0ck0wn3r 3 years, 3 months ago

University of Kentucky? Funny that you complain about living costs here yet constantly advocate for higher taxes for your pet projects.

BigSam 3 years, 3 months ago

I teach nearby. I have several students that enjoy attending KU. However, talking to one of my most academically-minded students, he hasn't been impressed with most of his professor (this is his first year at KU). Teaching either appears to be an inconvenience to those that teach his classes, or they must be utterly clueless. One of his older, tenured teachers appears to be totally lost in class and notes after testing that even he has forgotten what he was asking about in regard to some of his unintelligible questions.

I also have to note from experiences of many friends, or their children, that KU doesn't aggressively recruit outstanding students (unless they come from specific metro areas), and admin is less than friendly to many after they enter KU. Dealing with minor issues often becomes Quixotic due to red tape and less-than-engaged deans/administrators. Apparently undergraduate students are often seen as an inconvenience instead of an asset. Something that is far different when similar situations arise at KSU (which is overtly an undergraduate oriented institution).

I realize that KU and its graduate programs are the route to KU's national status in the rankings, and to so much of its funding (due to research grants, and donations by graduates to their professional schools/programs), but that does not mean that undergraduate students should be considered an inconvenience.

voevoda 3 years, 3 months ago

BigSam, I think that your student was one of the unlucky minority who got a lackluster intructor. Most of the faculty are very engaged with undergraduates and put a lot of effort into designing their course materials. But it's true that the KU administration is labyrinthine and often unhelpful. Rules are confusing and enforcement of them is needlessly rigid, even to the point of impeding students in their drive to achieve laudable academic goals. The proposed strategic plans are just creating more turmoil and distracting faculty from their true mission, to teach and to produce new knowledge.

beaujackson 3 years, 3 months ago

I remember when there were lots of great KU professors, and the tuition was about $20.00 per hour.

Does that date me?

John Hamm 3 years, 3 months ago

Gee. I wonder what effect the bad press the past few years might have had on KU's reputation and therefore enrollment.

Scott Morgan 3 years, 3 months ago

Is Lawrence getting a bad reputation for crime? I've had people in the metro area ask me what's going on here.

keamb 3 years, 3 months ago

I had this same issue. I graduated as Salutatorian of my senior class with a 3.95 GPA. I was set on going to KU all throughout my high school career; however, once I actually applied, I received no communication from them except when they sent me my acceptance letter and offered me a $1,000 non-renewable scholarship (which was an absolute joke compared to what other schools ended up offering me). I ended up at K-State because I received regular phone calls from advisors and faculty who actually acted as though they wanted me there. They took a personal interest in ME and my accomplishments. KU acted as though they couldn't care less... And this is coming from a person who WANTED to like it! I can't imagine them winning over anyone who wasn't completely sold on it in the first place. Their recruitment was a joke 2 years ago and it sounds like it continues to be today.

thinkinganalytically 3 years, 3 months ago

As I said in my post above, KU did a very good job trying to recruit my son last year. They offered him a $10,000 a year renewable scholarship as a National Merit finalist. KU offers this scholarship to all 15,000 National Merit finalists each year.

The best students are not choosing between KU and K State, KU and Fort Hays State, KU and Emporia State, they are choosing between KU and MIT, KU and Swarthmore College, KU and Dartmouth. I know three students who had these three choices and picked KU. These are the students that KU is targeting and working hard to recruit.

question4u 3 years, 3 months ago

Three students who picked KU over MIT, Swarthmore and Dartmouth?

Why on earth would anybody work hard enough to be admitted to MIT (#5 among national universities), Swarthmore (#3 among national liberal arts colleges) and Dartmouth (#11 among national universities) and opt to go to KU (#101 among national universities)? In addition to being far better schools, MIT, Swarthmore and Dartmouth guarantee to meet 100% of students' financial needs.

Any student who applies to MIT, a university strong in technology, and Swarthmore, a liberal arts college, doesn't have a very definite idea of what he or she wants out of higher education. Still that can't be enough to explain a choice like that. So what is the explanation?

thinkinganalytically 3 years, 3 months ago

The explanation for the students who picked KU over MIT and KU over Dartmouth revolve around cost. The way to understand the guarantee of "meeting 100% of students financial need" is that these institutions will charge each individual as much as they think the families are willing to pay. For those two students, MIT and Dartmouth tried to charge them too much. KU was far less expensive. In my son's case, a degree from KU would cost about half of one year's expenses at the school he now attends, so that school was correct about what we are willing to pay. The student who chose KU over Swarthmore did it at least in part because KU offers programs that are not available at even top liberal arts colleges like Swarthmore.

thinkinganalytically 3 years, 3 months ago

It was three different students making three different decisions. But it is not crazy to apply to both Swarthmore and MIT. Swarthmore has a small but highly respected engineering program, and both are strong in the natural sciences. It would be a choice between the breath available from a large university with graduate courses and the more personal setting of a small college.

Bud Stagg 3 years, 2 months ago

That's wonderful. So maybe they get 200 or 300 of these National Merit finalists. How are they at getting the other 8000 freshmen who pay the bills? I'm not seeing a very good effort there.

Bud Stagg 3 years, 2 months ago

That's wonderful. So maybe they get 200 or 300 of these National Merit finalists. How are they at getting the other 8000 freshmen who pay the bills? I'm not seeing a very good effort there.

thinkinganalytically 3 years, 2 months ago

KU is not nearly that successful at attracting National Merit finalists. OU has the most of any public institution, 207 in this incoming class, but they give students a full ride for 5 years that can be applied to any graduate study they do (first year of medical school free sounds pretty good to me), $5,000 in spending money, $1,500 to buy a laptop computer, $1,500 to cover costs of study abroad not covered by the tuition waiver, as well as dedicated advisers, early enrollment in courses, etc. KU does not pay nearly as much.

I was commenting about the claim that "KU does very little to lure exceptional students" by TheSychophant with squawkhawk and Kontum1972 in agreement. KU does a lot to attract exceptional students. I do agree that KU could and should do more to attract good students to fill out the first year class of about 4,500. Part of the solution is in outreach, part of the solution will be that good students stop seeing bad students coming to KU.

Joehawk, my son was FSHS class of 2011. Probably he knows your daughter.

Doug Fisher 3 years, 3 months ago

This couldn't possibly have anything to do with the fact that alot of students graduating from HS are leaving Kansas in higher numbers recently, especially with the way this state is headed with it's crazy leadership? Who would want to stay here with all the cuts to education, arts, and the like?

Scott Morgan 3 years, 3 months ago

Wrong nomansland, this is why JO-CO and the Legends are growing so fast. Actually, there are areas of Kansas growing with lots of oppotunity.

heygary 3 years, 3 months ago

"In the past five years, tuition at Kansas University has doubled. It's gone up far faster than inflation, income and even the housing market. (LJW)"

Get a clue! Give yourselves another big raise again this year ... see if enrollment drops another 5%.

LogicMan 3 years, 3 months ago

"Give yourselves another big raise again this year"

I think I read on this site that later this year will be the first time there's been any raises for the rank-and-file faculty and staff at KU in years, and this raise will be tiny. The higher tuition is mainly going for increased costs and reduced state support if I remembering accurately from past articles and discussion.

heygary 3 years, 2 months ago

Most rank and file are state positions ... check out management and administrator salaries ... unbelievable!

billbodiggens 3 years, 3 months ago

It may well be a problem of public perception of both KU and the City of Lawrence. Outside of Douglas County a goodly number have the perception of both as being dysfunctional families.

yourworstnightmare 3 years, 3 months ago

Compare to the private Baker University in Baldwin, which charges nearly triple the rate of KU.

It is sad that the State of Kansas has not funded the universities to levels that allow a low-cost education to Kansans who want one.

There is no free ride. You pay one way or another: through taxes to fund the universities, or through increased tuition.

By continuously cutting taxes and underfunding the universities, the citizens of Kansas have decided that they want a pay-go structure to higher education rather than a subsidized structure.

yourworstnightmare 3 years, 3 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

sbt87 3 years, 3 months ago

Check your facts. KU and K-State (and any state school for that matter... FHSU, ESU, PSU, etc) have the EXACT same undergraduate admissions requirements (21+ ACT, 2.0 GPA for KS residents/2.5 for Out of State, or top 1/3 of your graduating class.) That's set by the Board of Regents... not by KU or K-State administrators. So those acceptance rates would actually say that more low-quality students are applying to KU than at K-State. Awesome!

lawrencian 3 years, 3 months ago

Truth be told, it is probably some combination of ALL the factors all the previous comments pose. Myself, even with in-state tuition, and discounts on student fees because I work at KU, the only way I could finish my degree was by taking classes at a community college, simply because my schedule didn't allow for me to take daytime classes to fulfill all the requirements. KU is so far behind the times with online and evening classes -- for those of us who can't afford to give up our jobs to go to school full time, it is nearly impossible to finish.

LogicMan 3 years, 3 months ago

KU is a flagship / research institution, so having many evening courses would seem inappropriate for its mission.

But Douglas County does need its own public junior college that could handily fill this need. Someone should start one.

billbodiggens 3 years, 3 months ago

A “flagship” and “research institution” cannot have online or evening classes because it is contrary to their mission? It is contrary to their mission to provide a higher education for its consumers? It is contrary to their mission to actually provide a service to their supposed customers? I know it is hard to intellectual in a post to a news article, but either your post is supposed to be sarcastic or you actually have nothing to contribute of any value or nothing that make any sense.. I hope sarcasm was the desired goal.

yourworstnightmare 3 years, 3 months ago

LogicMan is correct.

KU is a research university. It is not a liberal arts college or a community college. Online and evening courses are offered at the latter two institutions, in part because the only responsibility of their faulty is to teach.

Faculty at research universities have other responsibilities, including research.

KU is already very flexible about accepting credits from other institutions including community colleges. More so than most other research universities.

So, remember, when talking about KU, students are but one "consumer" it must consider.

I would also sugest that if you see education as a consumer-driven process, you attend a degree mill school such as University of Phoenix where you simply pay for your degree rather than work hard and excel to earn, I repeat earn, your degree.

Why not go farther and charge tuition based on the grade you want.

If you want an A, that will be $800 A B, $600 A C, $400 A D, $200 For an F, it could be free!

lawrencian 3 years, 2 months ago

You're kidding, right? My preference would have been to take my classes at KU, but it wasn't even an option. So many of the basic core classes are taught by TAs anyway, that your argument isn't even true.

billbodiggens 3 years, 2 months ago

Okay, I get it now, Logic and Worse, your just being ludicrous to foment an argument.

PrettyTony 3 years, 2 months ago

Lawrence Journal World sucks...thats why.

Bob Reinsch 3 years, 2 months ago

I do think that there may very well be a correlation between the composition of the state government and the support KU gets from the state government. Our governor is a K-Stater, and several other prominent members of his administration. I am curious as to where all of the state leaders attended school after high school. Considering the rural areas of the state and southern parts of the state might show an inclination towards KSU, WSU, FHSU, PSU, would it be a surprise to anyone if there was a greater emphasis on improving those schools than KU? People take care of their own - ask Pat Roberts about that.

kansan03 3 years, 2 months ago

State allocations to universities are absolutely not based on our state officials' alma maters. The Kansas Board of Regents are critical in the allocation of state funding and disperse funding fairly to the regent schools. Just this week ,the regents pulled funding requests for a medical building at KU AND an expansion of the Vet Med program at K-State.

You can’t blame KU’s decreasing enrollment on a lack of state funding—state funding is decreasing significantly across the board. And KU’s endowment is significantly larger than K-State’s, but K-State is still increasing their enrollment.

jamoca 3 years, 2 months ago

Hope and Change is giving them a hard reality. How will they paf off their student loans if they can't find a job after they graduate? Fix the economy (defeat The Annointed One) and you'll see the trend reverse.

kernal 3 years, 2 months ago

One section of the student body I didn't see addressed is the out of state students attending KU. As non-residents pay higher tuition fees than residents, has anyone at KU crunched the numbers to see if the enrollment is down because of a decrease in out of state students? It's a real possibility that many of those who would have come here during a good economy have opted to attend state universities in their home state. Along with that, it's likely more Johnson County freshman are living at home to attend JCCC their freshman and sophmore years to save money for their last two years at a four year university.

Scott Morgan 3 years, 2 months ago

This will not be popular but google Manhattan and see how vibrant the city is. Olive Garden seems to be doing well there, and a host of other small venue places.

samsnewplace 3 years, 2 months ago

Bottom line, it is not an affordable school for low to middle income unless your parents have a college fund that they've started the day you were born and added to every day. Ridiculious they raise rates yearly, for what??

thinkinganalytically 3 years, 2 months ago

I think that fourth year students are paying exactly the same tuition rate that they paid as first year students. That is what the tuition compact is about.

NikeCortez 3 years, 1 month ago

KU sucks at everything. Bring back Mangino and your enrollment will go up.

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