VIDEO: Washburn breaks enrollment record

Celebrate President Jerry Farley announces to the university last fall, that they have broken a school record of 7,303.

Brian Dulle / Washburn Review

Exciting news hit the campus at Washburn University today as President Jerry Farley announced Washburn’s fall enrollment of 7,303 students surpassed the previous record set in fall 2005 of 7,261 students.

Enrollment manager Richard Liedtke said that it feels great to reach such high numbers.

“It’s a good feeling for the people that worked very hard to do this,” said Liedtke.  “It’s also great for the university, not just for the students but for the faculty, the staff and alumni to have this great opportunity to say we’ve broken the historical record for enrollment.”

Liedtke said that they have been working these last few years to move from a processing management mode to a relationship management mode.

“Developing those relationships with the counselors in the area, through out the state with parents and students,” said Liedtke.  “It’s truly all about relationship building.”

Each year Washburn sees a larger incoming freshmen class come in but they also see an increase in students leaving the university.  Liedtke said that retention has been a struggle at a number of colleges across the nation.

“We are focusing in on our retention rate and trying to make things happen on campus to be more intentional so that we can improve our retention,” said Liedtke.  “I know that it is one of the areas I’m going to be focusing on to try and see what we can do to help improve retention across campus.”

Liedtke said that Washburn can’t continue to bring in new students at high levels and expect to grow if they can’t keep them.

“That’s what we are here to do, to not only bring in students into a wonderful Washburn experience but to graduate and go out there and be proud Washburn alums as well,” said Liedtke.

Liedtke said that they are anticipating moving forward from here and continue increasing enrollment numbers.

“We’re not sure where we are with our percentages but we look to increase again next year”, said Liedtke.  “Bigger and better things.”