What Faculty Can Do about Declining Enrollment

Faculty can be very resistant to the idea that they need to do anything to address enrollment. More than once, I have witnessed faculty at department meetings telling the assembled crowd, "Faculty should not be held responsible for enrollment." At my own institution, enrollment questions are lobbed at the people who staff admissions, marketing, and retention, but these are not considered core issues for faculty and academic departments to handle. I would argue that enrollment issues present faculty with some real pressures as well as opportunities to learn about aspects of the university that usually remain hidden from view. In order to think more clearly about enrollment, faculty need to learn more about marketing efforts on their campus, about the possible students available to recruit, and about the educational needs of the communities that they serve.

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