CSU-Pueblo President Lesley Di Mare hosted a series of constituent meetings last Thursday to update the campus community about issues including enrollment, the budget and other areas of interest. Attendees also had the opportunity to ask the president and her cabinet questions.
Di Mare began with a news story produced by KOAA about the enrollment increase at CSU-Pueblo this year. The story emphasized that head count isn’t everything, though FTE or the number of credit hours that students are taking, is very important in terms of budget and generating revenue, and the classification of students also makes a difference.
For example, if there are 3000 international and out-of-state students, these students generate more revenue than 5000 in-state students, because out-of-state and international tuition is much higher than in-state.
Although total enrollment numbers have dropped, freshmen enrollment numbers are up. Last year there were 790 freshmen, and this year, the census reports 911 freshmen, which is an increase of more than 15 percent.
The freshman class is not only larger this year, but is higher in quality and diversity than the last two years. The reasons for this increase could be a result of adding six more Division II sports, including swimming and lacrosse. Also, CSU-Pueblo enrollment officials have targeted states such as Texas, New Mexico, and California which adds to the diverse population on campus.
“At the end of last year we had anticipated that we would start the new year to the good, and gladly, we are much above that in our enrollment,” Di Mare said.
Another technique to increase revenue is restoring buyouts, which in the past, were funded by one-time money from the CSU system. Buyouts make it easier to hire new faculty at a lower salary which saves money. $232,000 was saved this year in buyouts.
Other face-to-face gatherings with the president and her cabinet will follow this semester, and all students and faculty are encouraged to attend to receive the latest information on enrollment and budgets.