Preliminary indications suggest that Albany State University’s fall semester enrollment this fall could be the school’s largest to date. ASU’s fall population reached 4,019, officials stated, a 2 percent increase over the fall 2006 count of 3,927 and a 20 percent increase over 1997 enrollment.
An official figure won’t be available until late October.
The population increase didn’t occur on its own; that is, Albany State put systematic effort into it.
“We focused in and targeted our market group,” Valencia Price, vice president of enrollment management and student affairs, said Friday afternoon during a brief phone interview from Tennessee, where she was traveling.
Though in her administrative role for just two months, Price, previously a consultant, developed the school’s new strategic, enrollment-growth plan.
“We determined in which direction our market should run and solely focused on that group ... (primarily) first-generation students and the nontraditional students,” which she said includes second-career students.
Since the arrival of ASU President Everette Freeman, the university has initiated a series of Memorandums of Understanding with technical and two-year colleges as a means of smoothing out the transfer process and facilitating enrollment growth at ASU.
Freeman didn’t leave student recruitment to others, but also participated in that process by getting out there himself.
“I think that’s Dr. Freeman being Dr. Freeman,” Price said, “and I think that’s him understanding the process.”
The plan stretches for about three years, she said, and will naturally require tweaking here and there.
The next objective is targeting students residing along Georgia’s border states, she said.