Colorado State University- Pueblo’s $45 million operating budget for 2014 was approved by the CSU System Board of Governors and the university is placing a heavy emphasis on recruitment.
According to President Lesley Di Mare in an email, the agreement the university made promising to “reduce the operating budgets in the next year, demonstrates a tremendous commitment to our students.”
President Di Mare also announced in the email that there needs to be a concentration on strengthening recruitment, since the majority of the university’s revenue comes from enrollment of students.
Chief of Staff, Jennifer Mullen, explained that enrollment provides revenue in two different ways. The university is given an allocation of money from the state through the Colorado Opportunity Fund, based on the number of students enrolled. If enrollment is high then more money is allocated, while the lower the enrollment, the less money is given.
The university also relies on students paying their tuition. Mullen stressed how important it is that students completely understand the accountability they have after enrolling in college. According to Mullen, students need to be aware that they have an obligation to pay their bill on time.
“It’s our responsibility as an institution to the taxpayers of Colorado (to) have a good policy in place to help our students pay their tuition and to pay it on time,” Mullen said.
With student enrollment being an important part of revenue, the university is working very hard to create ways to recruit new students and to retain the continuing students. Mullen cannot stress enough that the sooner students register for their classes, the more beneficial it is for students and the university.
“We must continue to be focused on student recruitment and retention in order to ensure our revenue projections are met,” President Di Mare said in the email.
President Di Mare felt that the “no tuition increase” advertising campaign appeared to be “gaining momentum” as a recruitment technique. The enrollment rate for the fall semester and the retention rate at this current time acts as possible evidence that the “no tuition increase” is effective.
The university is employing other recruitment tactics besides the “no tuition increase.” The university has multiple initiatives such as the call centers, registration incentives and departmental efforts, according to the president in her email.
According to Mullen, call centers are programs in which faculty or students call potential students who have applied and been accepted to CSU-Pueblo, but who have not contacted the school. The call centers can also be based on certain majors or disciplines.
For example the chair or students of the mass communications department can call a student who claimed to be interested in joining this department. This way an experienced student of a department can speak with potential students.
President Di Mare also mentioned in the email how the university is working on a “new concurrent enrollment agreement with the university’s secondary schools and also creating a new scholarship plan that provides a more strategic method for disseminating the institutional aid scholarships.”
The university has made an agreement with its secondary schools such as Pueblo city and District 70 schools to have high school juniors or seniors attend classes on the CSU-Pueblo campus.
The students’ tuition will be paid by their high school. According to Mullen, this is a good way to benefit both the students and the university. Mullen hopes that these students will enjoy the campus so much that they will want to return.
The university is also maintaining the May and June operating expenditures at their year to date monthly average, which is necessary for the 2013 financial year to be closed with a balanced budget, according to President Di Mare in the email.
“We cannot grow complacent, because our budget must remain flexible, always being adjusted as we monitor revenue and expenditures,” President Di Mare said in the email.