Spring enrollment on track for next semester

Pernilla Schickhardt

Washburn is in the middle of the enrollment process for the spring semester. Little surprise is expected, as spring enrollment is typically a function of fall enrollment.

“We have new students coming in, and students graduating, but spring enrollment is typically about 96 percent of fall enrollment, it may go up just a little bit,” said Al Dickes, dean of enrollment management.

Washburn University does not actively recruit for the spring semester.

“We do some advertising aimed at the local market, saying that Washburn is enrolling for spring,” said Dickes.

The reason is that there is not much of a population to focus on to recruit this time of year.

“The high school students generally start in the fall, and transfer students generally transfer in fall,” said Dickes.

Since rolling enrollment was introduced at Washburn in the fall of 2004, the work of the administrations office also is a continuous process.

“It simply means that from Oct. 31 till classes begin, enrollment doesn’t stop,” said Dickes.

Spring enrollment is now monitored daily.

“We watch very carefully if enrollment follows our expectations. When necessary and possible, we add sections or seats to a class, when it doesn’t diminish the class,” said Dickes.

Adding seats and sections is not easily done. Too many students in one class can mean lower quality of the course, and an additional instructor is needed.

With rolling enrollment, problems of that kind can be foreseen and action planned before classes start.

That meant actions could not be planned to the same extent as today.

According to Dickes, the efficiency of the enrollment process serves the students better.

“We can monitor the enrollment and take any actions that may be needed. It was a big project that took a lot of work, we spent money to make this possible, and I think it was money well spent,” said Dickes.