18:00 PM

Ohio State unveils new enrollment plan

The Ohio State University’s new strategic enrollment plan lays a framework for increasing the quality, quantity, diversity and overall profile of the Ohio State student body by 2015.

The plan, which will be presented to the Board of Trustees later this week, calls for an increase in enrollment of at least 2,700 by 2015, which would increase Ohio State’s student population to more than 66,000.

The plan builds on Ohio State’s success in attracting better prepared students each year, according to Dolan Evanovich, vice president for strategic enrollment planning.

“This year, Ohio State will welcome the best prepared class in university history to the Columbus campus,” says Evanovich. “With this plan, we expect to holistically improve quality, diversity and quantity across all of the campuses in the next five years. The plan also aligns with statewide goals for increasing Ohio’s number of college graduates.”

Ohio State began strategic enrollment planning 15 years ago for the Columbus campus. Each year’s freshman class has been more successful than previous year in terms of test scores and high school achievements. Retention and graduation rates have improved accordingly, along with the size of graduating classes.

For the Columbus campus, the university plans to increase the profile of entering students so that by 2015:
•The average ACT score increases to 29 (up from 27.5 in 2009),
•96 percent of students rank in the top quartile of their high school class (from 85 percent in 2009).
•The freshman retention rate improves to 95 percent (from 92.5 percent in 2009)
•The six-year graduation rate improves to 80 percent (from 74.9 percent in 2009).

The plan also calls for increases of transfer students, regional campus students, and master-level graduate students.

In addition to quality, the university expects to attract a more diverse freshman class, increasing the percentage of out-of-state and international students, and the numbers of underrepresented and low-income students on all campuses.

Currently, Ohio State’s regional campuses are “open admission,” for Ohio high school graduates, so that students may apply up to the first day of classes each quarter. The plan calls for attracting more successful regional campus students, adding specific bachelor degree completion programs, and looking at options for student housing on or near regional campuses.

The plan, developed in collaboration with faculty and staff, embraces the university’s land grant mission of access to excellence. Evanovich says implementation will help Ohio achieve the state’s higher education goals while enhancing enrollment on all campuses of the university.