This year’s class of 1,717 freshmen students boasts an average ACT test score of 21.05 and a high school grade point average of 3.12, both of which are the highest at any time in the university’s history.
The improvement in the freshman class is part of a new strategic approach for YSU that focuses on admitting students who are better prepared for success at the college level. The transition is in response to new state funding formulas that emphasizes student outcomes and also in response to Eastern Gateway Community College’s existence in Youngstown.
“We are committed more than ever to enrolling students who are college-ready and who are going to experience success in a university setting and move along to graduation in a timely fashion,” said Gary Swegan, associate vice president for Enrollment Planning and Management.
Meanwhile, as Swegan projected earlier this year, YSU’s overall enrollment is down. The number of students on campus the first day of classes is 12,337, a 6.5 percent decrease from last Fall semester. Enrollment numbers are not official until the 15th day of the semester.
While it is the fourth consecutive year that enrollment has declined, Swegan said there are several positive indicators that enrollment of new students will be on the rise again next fall semester, including higher freshman retention, stronger early freshmen applications, enhanced and expanded scholarship opportunities and increased campus visit programs. In addition, YSU has employed the services of Royall & Company, a national leader in direct marketing student recruitment, to help boost enrollment.
“We are very optimistic that the pieces are in place for enrollment growth and that we are poised for sustained success,” he said.