CARBONDALE, IL (KFVS) - Southern Illinois University Carbondale has seen a decline in official fall enrollment from 2016 to 2017.
2017 fall enrollment 14,554, that is a decline of 8.96 percent over 2016.
Chancellor Carlo Montemagno, who started August 15, said the decline is anticipated. It comes as the university is undertaking a comprehensive review of programs and processes with the goal of increasing future enrollment.
Montemagno said he sees positive signs in a continuing increase in ACT scores for new freshmen and ongoing growth in freshman retention rates.
"These increases signal that we can continue to build on our efforts to attract outstanding students to SIU," he said. "I am confident that we can rebuild enrollment by clearly identifying ourselves as a comprehensive doctoral research university – the only one of our kind in our region. As the flagship of the SIU system, we will reassert our position as a leader in research, an innovator in education and an enabler of prosperity."
Montemagno said there are multiple reasons for recent enrollment declines, including the state budget impasse.
"Instead, they should motivate us to work together to make the changes necessary to go forward," he said. "In my few weeks here, I have been impressed by the positive energy I find at SIU. Our faculty, staff, alumni, friends and community are committed to SIU's success. We need to harness that energy and commitment around a shared vision for our future."
The school plans to reconstruct recruitment and retention initiatives to build an enrollment management unit that will work across campus and report directly to the chancellor, Montemagno said. A review of academic programs and enhanced outreach and marketing efforts are also underway.