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Changing from Enrollment-challenged to Resource-challenged: Results of a Five-year Enrollment Strategy

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2012 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


San Antonio, Texas

Publication Date

June 10, 2012

Start Date

June 10, 2012

End Date

June 13, 2012



Conference Session

Engineering Technology Futuristic Planning

Tagged Division

Engineering Technology

Page Count


Page Numbers

25.301.1 - 25.301.8



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Paper Authors


Peter J. Shull Pennsylvania State University, Altoona

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Peter J. Shull is an Associate Professor of engineering at Penn State University. Shull received his undergraduate degree from Bucknell University in mechanical engineering and his graduate degrees from the Johns Hopkins University in engineering science. Shull’s research has two main foci: nondestructive evaluation methods as applied to process control (NDE) and pedagogical methodology. Shull’s pedagogical efforts include an interest in women’s issues within the engineering environment, integrated techniques to improve engineering students’ communication skills, and program assessment methods that minimize stakeholders’ efforts while maximizing the effectiveness of the measurement tool.

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Changing from Enrollment-Challenged to Resource-Challenged: Results of a Five Year Enrollment Strategy.Many engineering technology programs across the country have been experiencing decliningenrollments for the past decade. Although there are periodic increases at individual institutions,typically these are due to temporary programs such as educational retraining forunemployed/displaced workers. These increases are generally short-lived and decreasedenrollments continue. Our school, a small 4-year liberal arts institution with engineering andengineering technology programs, has shown a similar trend with the more dramatic decreases inthe associate degree engineering technology programs. Faced with concerns for the viability ofour technology programs and a clear understanding that our current methods of recruitment werenot meeting our needs, we developed a multifaceted enrollment strategy. Our approach includedprogrammatic review, alignment of advertising to student trends, and new sources ofrecruitment.This work will detail our enrollment strategy and the concomitant results over a five year timeframe that led to an enrollment increase in our engineering technology program such that it iscurrently the largest program at our institution. This rapid increase has changed our focus fromprogram viability to a resource challenged environment (classroom space and faculty) where weare now pressed to enact more stringent enrollment controls.

Shull, P. J. (2012, June), Changing from Enrollment-challenged to Resource-challenged: Results of a Five-year Enrollment Strategy Paper presented at 2012 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, San Antonio, Texas. 10.18260/1-2--21059

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