Does your admissions department suffer from “summer melt”? And I’m not talking about a dripping ice cream cone on a hot day! Summer melt refers to students who have accepted an offer at an institution, paid the deposit, but by the fall haven’t enrolled.
Typically this occurs for one of two reasons. The student may be unsure which school to attend by the decision date, so they submit deposits for multiple schools to “hold their spot” until deciding where to enroll in the fall.
The other is a term – “college-intending students” – used by Harvard University’s Strategic Data Project to describe students who fully intend to attend the school, however don’t enroll due to lack of support during the transition period, limited resources to afford an education, or other reasons. College-intending students are commonly from a low-income background.
Here are five strategies to help your institution prevent summer melt.
- Outreach campaigns through social media, email and print for accepted students
- Simplify the post-acceptance process as students may be overwhelmed by all the paperwork and confusing forms
- Create an online support community for incoming students to connect
- Partner with government-funded education programs to mentor students throughout the process
- Utilize your institution’s alumni network to develop community service programs to promote awareness
To learn more about these strategies and other tactics to successfully prevent summer melt and improve the quality of your institution’s incoming class, click here.