The Founder of Ivy Coach, Bev Taylor, is in the news today on the topic of declining college enrollment numbers. In an “MSN” article entitled “Is a drop in college enrollment good for education?“, Bev mentioned how the less selective colleges are going to have to do a lot of work in order to get themselves noticed in a competitive landscape. The highly selective colleges — like the Ivy League colleges — are not impacted by declining enrollment numbers. This trend only impacts the less selective colleges. Schools like Duke, Northwestern, Yale, Columbia, and Stanford do not have declining enrollment numbers. We thought it important to reemphasize that fact.
Bev states in the article that one way for these less selective colleges to attract high achieving students is to offer merit-based scholarships to more students. By offering such scholarships, these universities can then raise their mean scores and ultimate ranking in the “US News & World Report” ranking. By doing so, they’ll eventually become more attractive to students…maybe to the point where they won’t even have to offer merit-based scholarships to attract the very best students.
So why are there declining enrollment numbers at these less selective colleges? Well, for one, more and more students are graduating in serious debt. If these less selective colleges aren’t offering degrees that actually get grads great jobs (as Ivy League colleges, for instance, so often do), then many wonder what the point of attending is. We can’t say that we don’t empathize with this dilemma. Students want to see a return on their investment when they’re paying so much for a college education these days — and rightly so!