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Center for Enrollment Research, Policy, and Practice

Nearly 40 years after the reauthorization of the Higher Education Act directed aid from institutions to students in an effort to enhance student choice and opportunity, the system of higher education continues to be widely stratified with regard to college degree attainment across family income levels and with regard to the distribution of students within America's educational hierarchy. A market-driven enrollment industry has emerged with priorities that are eroding the educational foundation of the academy and hindering the capacity to meet President Obama's goal of having the United States reclaim its position as the world leader in educational attainment by the year 2020. This has to change. Before changes can be made, however, one must first understand why enrollment management has transformed into a market-driven enterprise. Next, one must better understand the profession and, specific to this analysis, external influences on its practice. In particular, it is critical to assess: (1) Where do enrollment professionals derive their strategies and for what purpose in general?; (2) What types of strategies have enrollment professionals utilized from these sources?; (3) What is their motivation for turning to these strategy sources?; (4) How did enrollment professionals establish relationships with these entities?; and (5) What are the anticipated long-term impacts of these trends? In an effort to address these and other issues related to enrollment professionals, the authors conducted over 50 semi-structured interviews of one hour each with chief admission officers and chief enrollment officers during early 2009. These enrollment professionals primarily served at four-year institutions that are diverse with respect to public-private designation, Carnegie classification, and geographic location. Perspectives from enrollment professionals at 50 unique institutions are represented in this analysis. When asked where enrollment professionals seek to inform and borrow strategy ideas to guide their practice, chief admission and chief enrollment officers primarily highlighted two distinct areas: business resources and professional consultants, with substantially heavier reliance on consultants for direction. For the sake of this analysis, the authors will focus almost exclusively on consultants as strategy sources. (Contains 2 footnotes.)

Descriptors: Educational Policy, Higher Education, Educational Attainment, Enrollment Management, Consultants, Semi Structured Interviews, Student Financial Aid, Educational Legislation, Federal Legislation, Student Recruitment, Admissions Officers, Expertise, Political Issues, Competition, Colleges, College Bound Students

Center for Enrollment Research, Policy, and Practice. Rossier School of Education University of Southern California, 3470 Trousdale Parkway, Waite Phillips Hall 302, Los Angeles, CA 90089. Tel: 213- 740-7401; e-mail: cerpp[at]usc.edu; Web site: http://www.usc.edu/programs/cerpp





Author: Schulz, Scott Andrew; Lucido, Jerome A.

Source: https://eric.ed.gov/?q=a&ft=on&ff1=dtySince_1992&pg=4537&id=ED537409



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