More Decide Early
Admissions efforts seeing good early returns

SUNY Oswego’s largest-ever early-decision class represents good news as the college recruits in a competitive market for its fall 2013 freshmen.

Student tour of campusOswego sent binding enrollment offers to 190 early-decision applicants, a group with strong academic credentials, said Dan Griffin, interim director of admissions. They were picked from among the largest-ever batch of students applying under the early decision program—350 in all. Both those figures, denoting students declaring SUNY Oswego as their top choice, were about double the previous year.

“For fall 2013, we’re off to a very good start, well ahead of last year’s pace,” Griffin said. “Now we’re in the process of sending out around 4,000 regular admissions offers, which are going out sooner than previous years.” As of Friday, his staff had sent over 1,000 more offers to prospective students than at the same time last year.

With Superstorm Sandy disrupting the lives of many in New York City and on Long Island, Oswego moved back its early-decision deadline two weeks, which may have been among the factors behind the increase in applications.

But overall response has been positive—about 2 percent more freshman applications than last year at this time, with interested students spanning the majors and geographic areas—especially important with the number of Upstate New York high school graduates shrinking, Griffin noted.

“I think the numbers mean we’re reaching a lot of students interested in the majors and services we offer,” Griffin said. “Our academic programs, our campus and our atmosphere are all very appealing.”

The spring 2013 semester also will welcome more new students than usual, with a combined total of approximately 350 new freshmen and transfers starting classes this week, including 44 students from South Korea.

Getting social

For the large pool of applicants and admitted students, the college has added more social media attention to their toolkit. Karen Archibee from the Admissions Office and Tim Nekritz from the Public Affairs Office spearheaded the creation and maintenance of an active invitation-only Facebook group for admitted students and have found increasingly intensive interactions on Twitter.

The Facebook group has been buzzing with accepted students introducing themselves, making new friends and asking questions. They are excited about college, their programs of study and the developments on campus including the science facilities opening in fall, Nekritz said.

In addition, staff and students in Admissions and Public Affairs are working on a campaign promoting Admitted Student April, where five admitted student days may prove critical to a robust incoming class. Traditionally around 70 percent of students who visit on an Admitted Student Day commit to attending Oswego, Griffin explained.

PHOTO CAPTION: Interest rising—Student tour guide Mike Epp talks to prospective students and their families in front of the rising Richard S. Shineman Center for Science, Engineering and Innovation recently. The activity on campus and strong academic offerings were among the major factors behind Oswego’s largest-ever early decision class commitments.

(Posted: Jan 24, 2013)