student applications at Antioch raise hopes
According to Michael Murphy, dean of admissions and financial aid at Antioch
College, a student who applies to Antioch is more likely to actually attend
the college than the average student applying to another school. So when
Murphy reports that applications to Antioch are up nearly 40 percent over
this time last year, and 72 percent over three years ago, his optimism
about a significant increase in the colleges enrollment seems justified.
Because of increasing pressure on high school seniors to attend college,
the average applicant will apply to more than seven schools this year.
Applicants to Antioch, on the other hand, usually apply to only a few
other schools, Murphy said, and nearly one-fifth of Antiochs applicants
do not apply anywhere else. Taken together, these numbers provide hope
that the class entering in the fall of 2003 will be one of Antiochs
biggest in recent history.
There is a lot of pressure on students to achieve that status that
comes with getting into a certain college. Applicants to Antioch dont
seem to be as concerned with that status, so when we report an increase
in applications we assume that is due to genuine interest in attending,
and we can reasonably expect more students to attend, he said.
Increasing the colleges enrollment continues to be a top priority
of Antioch College and Antioch University leadership. The school has what
Murphy calls a comparatively tiny endowment, so it depends
upon revenues from tuition and fees to remain financially stable.
An increase in enrollment means more money for the college, and more money
could be used to improve every aspect of the colleges business,
from its facilities to its faculty salaries, Murphy said.
Faculty executive committee member and professor of biology and environmental
sciences Jill Yager echoes the sentiments of many Antioch community members
when she expresses her desire to see a larger enrollment.
Money is very tight right now, and the only way that will change
in the near future is to have an escalation in enrollment, Yager
said. If enrollment were to increase, a lot of the colleges
problems would be easier to solve.
For those administrators trying to make budget estimates based on current
enrollment, calculating an exact, up-to-the-minute enrollment figure is
difficult this early in the academic term. Dean of Students Pat Whitlow
reports that as of Sept. 30, Antiochs enrollment of full-time, degree-seeking
students was 625. Twenty-one students withdrew in the fall 2002 term,
and 15 students enrolled this term, so the colleges enrollment may
College Registrar Bonnie Scranton refused to release any enrollment figures
without the approval of college President Joan Straumanis, who was away
from the college on business and was not available.