Economics of SEM

SEM in this context stands for “Strategic Enrollment Management“. A recent article on strategic enrollment management in the Shepherd University enrollment management newsletter provides insight into the structure of strategic enrollment management components:

Revenue is an important part of the SEM strategy building. The institution must determine its Optimum Revenue, defined as the sum of appropriations and tuition revenue. Like Optimum Enrollment, (benchmark enrollment figure that indicates revenues and expenditures are in balance) Optimal Revenue is a benchmark that fluctuates and is impossible to calculate with absolute precision. An institution’s Optimum Tuition rate may actually be lower or significantly higher that the tuition currently charged. Current Revenue is then compared to Optimum Revenue. The difference becomes the SEM Revenue Goal.

  • Current Enrollment x Current Tuition = Current Revenue
  • Optimum Enrollment x Optimum Tuition = Optimum Revenue
  • Optimum Revenue – Current Revenue = SEM Revenue Goal

Strategic Reinvestment, a key economic model of SEM, is a function of the SEM Revenue Goal rather than an absolute dollar figure. This refers to allocating resources saved from existing revenue streams, or allocating new revenues generated by SEM strategies to further the success of the SEM program. An example of this is setting financial aid levels as a function of revenue. The flexibility of this reinvestment provides unexpected control in bringing in the class at or above numerical and quality expectations until optimum levels are achieved. Such an approach eliminates important opportunities through miscalculating yields on financial aid offerings or putting continuing students in competition with new students for limited financial resources.

Shepherd University Enrollment Management Newsletter:

Additional information on strategic enrollment management:

Enrollment Management update

Enrollment Management professionals love data. High school student demographics including race, ethnicity, geographic location, standardized test scores, etc. are all part of a strategic enrollment management toolkit. Unfortunately, the Princeton Review had a recent long-term information breach of that same sort of information that is so often of interest to higher education enrollment management divisions:

The Princeton Review, the test-preparatory firm, accidentally published the personal data and standardized test scores of tens of thousands of Florida students on its Web site, where they were available for seven weeks.

One file on the site contained information on about 34,000 students in the public schools in Sarasota, Fla., where the Princeton Review was hired to build an online tool to help the county measure students’ academic progress. The file included the students’ birthdays and ethnicities, whether they had learning disabilities, whether English was their second language, and their level of performance on the Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test, which is given to students in grades 3 to 11.

Chemeketa Community College Scholars

Chemeketa Community College - Salem Oregon
Chemeketa Community College in Salem, Oregon wants to know if you are a Chemeketa scholar…because if you qualify, Chemeketa will give you a full tuition scholarship for 2 years!

Are you a Chemeketa scholar?

Are you graduating from high school this academic year?
Do you currently have a cumulative, unweighted GPA of 3.5 or better (as of 7th semester grades)?
Do you live in the Chemeketa service district?

Are you willing to:

Begin your college career the fall after you graduate high school?
Enroll in 12 or more credits per term?
Commit to maintaining at least a 3.25 GPA in your Chemeketa classes?

Then you’re a Chemeketa scholar

Chemeketa Scholars qualify for

* A full tuition scholarship for up to two years.
* Placement in an on-campus, paid position such as student ambassador, peer advisor, tutor, or mentor. Job placement not guaranteed. Positions are limited.

Enrollment Management update 7/16/07

Declining Enrollment:
Eastern Oregon University is in trouble. With enrollment and finance on the decline, officials have created a “strategic plan that includes enrollment management, recruitment and transfer improvements.”

Student applications are down 41 percent this fall compared with two years ago. Tuition revenue for the university dropped $1.48 million below its expectations for this year; it projects an additional $847,000 decline in tuition revenue for 2007-08. With fewer students, the school is also failing to fill its residence halls, which means it must pay a bigger share of dorm debt.

Perhaps it is time for Eastern Oregon University to contact some strategic enrollment management consultants?

Enrollment Management update 4/26/07

Marilee Jones, the Dean of Admissions at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), resigned from her post today “after it was confirmed that she had ‘misrepresented her academic degrees to the Institute,’ Dean for Undergraduate Education Daniel E. Hastings announced in an e-mail to the MIT community today.”

According to Jones, “I misrepresented my academic degrees when I first applied to MIT 28 years ago and did not have the courage to correct my resume when I applied for my current job or at any time since.”

Hastings stated that “the process of admitting the incoming class continues without disruption.”

Continue reading Enrollment Management update 4/26/07

Enrollment Management update 4/10/07

A lot of enrollment management administrators ponder the effects of the U.S. News and World Report college rankings report. The report can lead to a lot of free publicity for those schools that are fortunate enough to be ranked by U.S News.

Continue reading Enrollment Management update 4/10/07

Enrollment Management update 3/14/07

Admissions 2.0:
Dan and Blake will be facilitating a web conference in April (Tuesday, 4/24/07) entitled, “Getting Started with Search Engine Optimization in Admissions

Admissions directors, enrollment managers, marketers, and web editors will leave this web conference with cost-effective ideas on how to make their admissions websites more search engine-friendly and easier for prospective students to find. Participants will explore principles of search engine optimization and web analytics and develop an understanding of how to use these tools to make informed decisions on the content and formatting of their admissions websites.

Continue reading Enrollment Management update 3/14/07