Enrollment Management - Domestic & International

Opportunities - Domestic

  • KU is one year into a three to six year implementation process to improve enrollment including process changes already implemented (streamlined application, scholarship deadline, retooled publications, CRM application pushes, etc.).
  • Students perceive that KU's financial support is lower than schools of similar size. New scholarship and enrollment policies are being deployed; however, buy-in and support is needed from the academic units to fully leverage institutional aid to achieve enrollment targets.
  • The lack of centralized KU branding and communication plan and accompanying budget is a significant impediment to the overall university branding/marketing and recruitment effort.
  • Bold Aspirations addresses challenges in persistence through development of several new programs. The business case focuses specifically on coordinating around Early Warning Systems and Learning Communities. Additional programs include a Common Book Program and Learning Seminars.
  • Strengthening the pipeline of undergraduates to and through KU is a key goal of Bold Aspirations, and the Enrollment business cases are aligned closely with efforts being developed as part of Strategy 1-B on the implementation page.

Opportunities - International

  • To expand international enrollment, International Programs should reorganize, shifting the International Undergraduate Admissions area from International Student and Scholar Services into a new, larger unit which will have formal responsibility both for direct international recruitment and for the establishment of productive long-term relationships abroad.
  • International students have unique needs: verification of financial ability, foreign transcript analysis and GPA conversions, verification of language proficiency, international credit transfer, immigration documentation, visa processes and regulatory compliance, cultural adjustment, and, for some, entry to KU via the AEC.
  • Unlike domestic recruitment, international enrollment can be greatly enhanced by building on the global linkages of KU's international programs, faculty, researchers and schools – these critical links can be an effective foundation for long-term relationships that funnel international students to KU.
  • Faculty support and assistance with international enrollment will be key in achieving optimal growth:
    • A willingness to partner with international entities and develop joint programs.
    • Sharing of international linkages and opportunities with International Programs.


  • KU aspires to increase first-year retention rate to 90% and the six-year graduation rate to 70% by
    • Creating a robust first-year experience as part of Bold Aspirations
    • Designing a new core curriculum, the KU Core
    • Strengthening the recruiting pipeline through more aggressive and earlier outreach to prospective students and their families, the alignment of scholarship packages with the achievement of enrollment goals and the use of data modeling and advanced analytics to maximize resource (human and fiscal) allocation
    • Enhance transfer student recruitment and retention through the implementation of processes, policies and systems designed to facilitate transfer student recruitment and persistence
  • Increase domestic student enrollment for both freshmen and transfer students through enlarged applicant pool and yield management. Increase international enrollment and persistence.
  • Increase applicant pool through more coordinated University approach to branding and outreach.
  • Create a sense of ownership of enrollment goals by faculty and staff throughout the University through creation of an "enrollment management council" and through the alignment of budget incentives.


  • Student retention rates are low (currently 79%), compared to a peer average of 84%; KU ranks 9th among 10 peer benchmarks.
  • The most significant risks are related to school and faculty participation in enrollment management.
  • KU's decentralized marketing currently fails to leverage the marketing power of KU and presents a diluted brand image to potential students.
  • International student markets can be volatile and are reactive to external forces that KU has no ability to influence; KU must diversify its student recruitment base and develop sustainable partnerships.
  • Existing admission standards at KU do not reflect the level of academic preparation necessary to be successful at a research intensive institution.


  • Executive Leadership Team (Chancellor, Provost, Vice Provosts, Deans)
  • Academic Units
  • Prospective Students and Families
  • Guidance Counselors, Gifted and IB Coordinators
  • Community Colleges
  • University Relations
  • Student Affairs
  • Office of Institutional Research and Planning
  • Undergraduate Studies
  • Student Housing
  • Information Technology
  • KU Endowment Association
  • KU Alumni Association
  • KU Athletics
Matt Melvin
Matt Melvin
Vice Provost, Enrollment Management
Charlie Bankart
Charlie Bankart
Assistant Vice Provost, International Programs

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