Since my arrival at Dickinson on July 6, I have been fully immersed in the Division of Enrollment, Marketing & Communications, getting to know the talented teams in each department and mining available data to better understand the successes and challenges in each area. I am eager to provide support and leadership to the division to enhance Dickinson’s position in the marketplace as we continue to attract the very best and brightest scholars to our community. Following are a few updates on some of the areas that were discussed in last year’s President’s Report.

  • Dickinson received 6,031 first-year applications for the class of 2019, making it the second largest applicant pool in the college’s history, surpassed only by the fall 2011 pool (the class of 2015) of 6,067 applicants. The class of 2019 target was 600-620 students and we enrolled 731. While the large class presents challenges, it shows that demand for Dickinson is stronger than ever at a time when many of our peer institutions struggle to make their class.
  • Increasing student diversity continues to be a priority. The class of 2019 includes 19 percent domestic students of color, and we increased our international student population from 10 percent to 11 percent. In addition, 13 percent are first-generation college students (neither parent has earned a bachelor’s degree). We continue to work with community-based organizations that help us to connect with talented, historically underrepresented students who might not otherwise consider Dickinson. As well as from some of the longstanding partnerships mentioned in the previous report, many strong applicants come through organizations such as Prep for Prep, A Better Chance and the CollegeBound Initiative. In addition, our Discover Diversity at Dickinson program is in its fourth year. This event brings underrepresented students to campus in November to experience Dickinson during an overnight stay and our traditional open house. Since adding this program we have seen our greatest increase in qualified underrepresented students in our Early Decision round, which has had a positive impact on our overall applicant pool.
  • We continue to enroll the most talented and diverse class that we can afford. More families are applying for financial aid, and many see their out-of-pocket education cost as a primary factor in where their student will enroll. While the actual cost to educate a Dickinson student is more than $75,000 annually, the direct price of a Dickinson education is $61,826 with the college’s endowment and annual giving subsidizing the gap.
  • The Dickinson Admissions Volunteer Society (DAVS) continued to grow this year, with 984 prospective students interviewed in 2014-15 by 644 DAVS members (533 alumni and 111 parents) in 34 states and 35 countries.
  • We enhanced our geographic outreach efforts this fall by hiring a regional director of West Coast recruitment, Phillip Moreno. We need to continue to saturate our primary markets through intensive recruitment efforts but use available data to grow new markets as well.