Dr. Deborah Curtis along with Jeff Taylor, the chair of the board of trustees, Chris MacDonald of ISU faculty senate, Todd LaComba Chair of Staff Council and Madison Longyear, President of Student Government Association.
Taylor said that one of the challenges that ISU is facing is enrollment. Taylor stated that when there are enrollment issues, there are issues with budgets.
Taylor said on some of the occurring issues, “there [aren’t] enough kids graduating from high school these days.”
Taylor said that they are working on the enrollment count very diligently.
Jason Trainer, Vice Provost for enrollment management elaborated more on the enrollment at ISU.
Trainer said that the university is taking steps towards getting higher enrollment, by looking at the numbers of freshman, returning, transfer, online and graduate students.
According to Trainer, he said “when we talk about improving the enrollment, typically there [are] kinda strategies I’m looking at trying to improve all of those.”
Trainer said that a challenge, just as Taylor had said, during the fall address is that one of the challenges all schools face is that there are not as many high school graduates anymore, which affects the amount of incoming freshmen, which lowers college enrollment.
Trainer had said that there are different strategies when it comes to the different types of students that maybe in college.
Trainer said the numbers for this year include the following: 1892 freshman, 795 transfer and 434 graduate students are in the numbers this year.
However Trainer said that he personally feels optimistic that the university is doing the right things and the numbers are showing an early indication that next year the enrollment is rebounding.
Longyear stated that she felt “grateful to be serving as the SGA president and to be serving a university that has given [her] so much.”
Longyear also added that they were trying to insure that this year was successful, especially when they are working on bettering student involvement, Sycamore pride and traditions, sustainability and health and wellness as part of the to-do list that SGA has for goals.
Longyear said “Each week we celebrate ‘Blue Fridays’ across campus. SGA has revamped “Blue Fridays” this year and are already blown away by the Sycamore pride we have seen.” Longyear even added that their have been opportunities for organizations to host a “Blue Friday’ by not only showing their organization but also as a way to promote school pride.
Longyear said that she becomes more grateful that she gets to learn, grow and lead on such a great campus. She even explained the slide show that has her photo on it and explained how it is from her senior year of high school and reflections on how far she had come and even jokes she needed to go to the career center for a new headshot.
Curtis said, “What makes Indiana State University the special place that it is? Well it's all about institutional distinctiveness and impact.”
Curtis said that they are trying to keep ISU as affordable as possible to be able to allow students to engage in a high quality education.
Curtis mentioned that there is a 95% placement rate from graduating to employment, graduate school or the military.
Curtis said, “we also have a tremendous worldwide impact, we see our distinctiveness in who we are as our alumni go out into the world and make a big difference.
Curtis mentioned that ISU in this past year has lost two impactful alumni which include Jamal Khashoggi and Eva Kor. Curtis said of the two alumni that “each was a bold force for change.
She noted, “today we have some serious work ahead of us [...] today, here are three areas that demand our collective focus effort.”
Curtis said, “degree completion is the same thing as student success.” Curtis also I added that the university as a whole needed to be focused on the student success rate.
Curtis said, “I guarantee the strategic enrollment council is taking a look at of these, not just being able to be successful at all of them, but being able to provide that experience for the students that come to Indiana State.”