Alfred University News

Alfred University’s 2023-24 class far exceeds its enrollment goals

Alfred University’s class for the 2023-24 academic year stands at 519, the largest since 2019. With 434 first-year students and 85 transfers, the University exceeded its goal of 450 for this year’s class by 14 percent and exceeded the enrollment of last year’s incoming class by 30 percent.

The incoming class for 2023-24 is Alfred University’s largest since 2019, when there were 557 combined first-year and transfer students. News of Alfred’s larger-than-expected class comes as a number of institutions of higher education in New York State and throughout the region struggle with flat enrollment numbers, which in some cases have resulted in schools either closing or eliminating academic offerings.

“As the higher education sector continues to wrestle with many challenging variables, it is becoming increasingly clear that it will be those institutions who dare to think differently about how to engage families and demonstrate the value of investing in a four-year education that will remain competitive for the long term,” said Mark Zupan, president of Alfred University. “For us, we take a whole-campus approach to the student recruitment and retention process whereby deans, faculty, staff, students and alumni all play vital roles helping students see the distinct value of Alfred’s commitment to helping them realize their purpose.”

Jonathan Kent, vice president for Enrollment Management, pointed to a number of factors that resulted in the University far exceeding its recruiting and enrollment goals for the current academic year. They include making financial aid offers earlier, which resulted in earlier decisions by students to enroll at Alfred; collaborating with the University’s Marketing and Communications office to contact students earlier in the recruitment process; the launching of the AU Scholars program three years ago; being a lead teach-out partner for students at Medaille University and Cazenovia College, which both closed ahead of the 2023-24 academic year; and increasing enrollment among international students and students enrolled in the University’s H/EOP programs.

“The entire campus community came together to help make each and every student and their family feel welcome when they visited campus, answered emails, and chatted with them virtually,” Kent commented. “Our commitment to mentorship, intersections, and inclusivity resonated with our new students and their families. Students want to know they are not a number but are known by everyone on campus. It’s a competitive landscape and what we did was make sure each student was known and received everything about enrollment earlier in the process.” 

Zupan also pointed to a focus on ensuring the University offers the finest student experience possible.

“Alfred University has been pursuing innovation in all dimensions across the campus,” he said. “We are developing new academic programs, renovating residential and learning spaces, and upgrading our advising process to be sure every student can succeed.”