Higher Education’s Best Kept Secret

Recruitment tactics at Ohio Wesleyan University, as reported in the Chronicle of Higher Education, reveals the best kept secret in American higher education: there are enough university seats for everyone (and then some). Ohio Wesleyan is a US News top-100 liberal arts school with a stellar reputation and not enough students. While the Ivies and near-Ivies thrive on astronomically low acceptance ratios (hence, astronomically high selectivity), almost every other university is still in search of a complete freshman class.

This reveals the secret inside higher education: that at the undergraduate level, academic quality is almost uniformly high, and many very strong schools are, literally in the OWU case example, begging for students. The brand sensitivity of parents, aided and abetted by secondary school college counselors, makes little sense. There are enough seats. Relax, everyone.

Evaluation, Governance, Headship, Strategy  |  permalink

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