Increase in Transfer Students Expected at WIU for Fall 2016
March 14, 2016
MACOMB, IL – Staff in the Western Illinois University Office of Undergraduate Admissions are expecting to see more students transferring to the institution from community colleges in downstate Illinois for Fall 2016. Applications from transfer students south of I-80 are up 17 percent (+93), and accepted new transfer students are up 22 percent (+93).
"With everything happening with the state budget right now, we are encouraged to see the seeds we've sown two years ago with transfer students are starting to yield for us," said Admissions Director Andy Borst. "Since most of our transfer students come to us from a shorter driving radius than new freshmen, it is great news that our numbers from local students have nearly doubled. It shows our efforts to develop new partnerships with community colleges and communicate with potential transfer students were effective."
According to Borst, the largest increases in accepted transfer students come from John Wood Community College in Quincy (+81 percent; +21), Illinois Central College in Peoria (+50 percent; +17) and Carl Sandburg College in Galesburg, (+27 percent; +10). Transfer numbers from the Chicagoland area continue to lag behind, down 12 percent (-28) in accepted new transfers.
"Despite a 15 percent increase in recruitment visits this year, freshmen applicants are down 10 percent," he added. "With no money from the state since June 2015, there is a crisis of confidence among many prospective students and families who are discouraged from looking at in-state universities. The lack of state budget is undeniably having a direct impact on our enrollment. We are just waiting to see how much of an impact and working to see if we can minimize the impact for our campus. Financial aid packages are being sent and students are making decisions. We know that regardless of potential enrollment changes, there will be a few thousand new students who are excited about becoming Leathernecks in Fall 2016."
Borst also said when parents call Western with concerns, staff works to put them at ease about WIU's future.
"Our programs with strong enrollments will continue to do well for a long time to come. I am most concerned with the parents and students who are not calling and making assumptions. With many high school spring breaks coming up, we hope that more students will visit campus to see all of the good things happening at Western Illinois University," Borst noted.
The next Discover Western Open House program is set for Saturday, April 2. The next overnight program for accepted new freshmen will be April 17-18. Prospective students may visit campus daily Monday–Saturday.
For more information about WIU enrollment or visiting campus, contact the Office of Undergraduate Admissions at (309) 298-3100 or firstname.lastname@example.org.