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Orscheln: Increased enrollment at CSU-Pueblo a team effort

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Vice President of Student Services and Enrollment Management Paul Orscheln
Vice President of Student Services and Enrollment Management Paul Orscheln

Paul Orscheln, who started his role as the vice president of student services and enrollment management at Colorado State University-Pueblo on Sept. 30, 2013, has succeeded substantially in increasing enrollment on campus.

Orscheln completed both his undergraduate and master’s degrees from the University of Central Missouri in Exercise Science, and received his doctorate in educational leadership from the University of Missouri in 2012.

He started working as the admissions counselor at the University of Central Missouri in 1999 and worked there for eight years. During his last four years at the UCM, he served as the director of admissions.

In January 2008, he accepted the position of director of admissions at Northern Arizona University, where he worked for over four years, finishing his tenure as the executive director of enrollment services. From there, he went on to be the associate vice president of enrollment management at Northern Kentucky University and worked there until starting his current position at CSU-Pueblo in September 2013.

Orscheln applied to CSU-Pueblo because he wanted to expand his professional experiences, as well as relocate to the state of Colorado.

“My wife is from Colorado, and we really wanted to move to back here,” Orscheln said.

According to Orscheln, he enjoys his job at CSU-Pueblo as it includes more than just one part of student services.

“This position not only has the enrollment management part to it, but also the entire student affairs portfolio,“ Orscheln said. “All of these areas impact student success, which is why I choose to work in this field.”

Under Orscheln’s leadership, enrollment has increased significantly. In fall 2013, the number of freshman applications received at CSU-Pueblo was 3,977, and that number nearly doubled at 6,859 in fall 2014. The number of students admitted to the university in fall 2013 was 2,853, which rose to 3,893 in fall 2014. The number of new freshmen enrolled in the fall 2014 rose to 911 from 790 in fall 2013.

“Through Paul Orscheln’s vision and support, we have been able to steadily increase our international population on the CSU-Pueblo campus,” said Annie Williams, director of the Center for International Programs at CSU-Pueblo.

“He has greatly assisted with direct recruitment efforts.  For the first time ever, CSU-Pueblo will be represented in India this spring, and selected countries of the Middle East will be focused on as well.  All of these groups not only bring much-needed revenues to the campus, but enhance the diverse makeup of CSU-Pueblo, giving us all a more in-depth glance of various cultures of the world.”

“Without Paul on board, I am doubtful these new initiatives would ever have taken place.  He sees, and truly believes in, the enrichment this student body gives to our growing campus,” Williams said.

According to Orscheln, the main strategies for his success in increased enrollment at CSU-Pueblo include aggressive sales and concentrated marketing in the target market areas. CSU-Pueblo contacted over 60,000 seniors in February 2014.

During his recent guest speaker address at Pueblo Rotary 43, he said, “One of the reasons our strategy has succeeded is because we have contacted high school seniors more than just once. So, these seniors kept hearing from us and their interest in applying and going to CSU-Pueblo kept building over time. In previous years, these seniors would be contacted once, and if we did not hear back from them, we never tried to contact them again.”

Orscheln believes that he works with a great team, which has made his goal of increased enrollment possible.

“There are very good people here who are ready to roll up their sleeves and get their work done,” Orscheln said. “The success we have had would not be possible without the strong faculty and academic programs we have on campus.”
Orscheln also appreciates the support that president Lesley Di Mare has given. “I can’t say enough about the leadership of President Di Mare. She has been very supportive of our efforts.”

Sharing his past successes, Orscheln said, “Every school I have been at during my career, enrollment increased because I had a great team to work with.”