Campus tours, a new downtown, and student organizations are just three ways Kent State University attracts new students. Kent State not only has to interest students in obtaining a higher education in its classrooms, but also has to find a way to keep students involved and intrigued throughout their four years on campus.
The Office of Enrollment Management and Student Affairs is dedicated to finding a stronger academic class each year and to helping current students find where they belong on campus. Events like Blastoff and the Black Squirrel Festival assist incoming students with finding extracurricular activities. There are also people, like tour guides and student success leaders, to help prospective and incoming students find their way.
Greg Jarvie, a man committed to growing Kent State academically and physically, is now in his twenty-eighth year of working for the university. He started working in housing, and then became part of the recruitment team before becoming the Vice President of Enrollment Management and Student Affairs in 2009.
The expectation for incoming students rose over the past five years, as each class has stronger GPAs and higher ACT scores. Also, the retention rate for second-year students has risen from 74 percent to 80 percent since Jarvie came into his new position.
This year, the university met and exceeded its goal of 4,200 incoming freshmen by 42 students. The growing popularity of Kent State and the higher academic profile is helping the university move towards their goal of being in the same league as Miami University.
More changes to come for enrollment within the next few years will help build Kent State’s demographic profile. Next year, a program to help minority students in Cleveland public schools, Rise, will kick off to assist students in getting scholarships to attend Kent State when they graduate.
The university is also planning to develop a market area in states like Virginia, Illinois, and North Carolina in order to help bring in more out-of-state students. Alumni are currently being trained to go to college fairs and recruit students for Kent State in the launch of their new program, the alumni support program.
It’s no secret that the cost of going to college is getting more expensive. The higher cost is hurting some students’ chances of coming to Kent State, especially some minority students. The university is working with the bookstore to try to lower the cost of textbooks, as well as trying to budget out more scholarships.
Another change this year is the admissions tour room is now located in the Student Center to make it easier to show students the heart of campus. Jarvie said he believes the tour guides are a crucial part of the recruitment process and are a big reason prospective students choose Kent State.
More pivotal people who will be great sources are Mark Evans, Director of Financial Aid; Nancy Dellavecchia, Director of Admissions; and David Garcia, Associate Vice President for Enrollment Management.