Enrollment has committed to evaluating and improving current strategies and developing new strategies for the recruitment of historically underrepresented students. To that end we have:
Admission changed the way Bellringers are selected to encourage greater participation from underrepresented students. Bellringers are students who assist admission with recruitment events and receive a small scholarship for their participation. Previously, Bellringers were selected before enrollment. Now Bellringers will be selected from those who volunteer as Wofford Ambassadors. This change will allow admission to recruit BIPOC (Black, Indigenous and people of color) students as Ambassadors and encourage them to apply to be a Bellringer.
- Completed anti-bias training together in June.
- Read all posts on the Black@Wofford Instagram account as well as the Wofford Anti-Racism Coalition’s grievances and demands.
- Identified highly-rated BIPOC students who are prospects and moved them to inquiry status. Prospects are student names we have purchased, but who have not responded to direct mail or email communication. Converting them to an inquiry will increase the mail received. We are experimenting with this practice this year and will track results.
- Met with the leaders of Diversity Council organizations on campus to update them on recruitment strategies and to encourage participation in Wofford Ambassadors.
- Identified the top BIPOC students in each of their territories and sent handwritten communication to encourage an application.
- Sent handwritten communication to every BIPOC student who visited campus before the shut down due to COVID-19.
- Joined the American Talent Initiative, a consortium of 100 top-performing colleges and universities, whose mission is to increase Pell Grant eligible students at institutions with high graduation rates. ATI’s goal is to add 50,000 Pell students to participating institutions by 2025.
- Created a scholarship for first-generation students. Wofford typically enrolls 50 to 75 first-generation students each year and 20 to 25 receive this $25,000 scholarship.
- Created a scholarship for students who complete the Citizen Scholars Program. Citizen Scholars is a Spartanburg County Foundation Program that selects students in fifth grade and provides programming to prepare them to succeed in college. There are three Citizen Scholars in Wofford’s current first-year class.
- Evaluated “Why Wofford?” responses on admission applications for African-American students applying for fall 2020. Anecdotal findings suggest these students are more focused on the availability of particular academic programs than other student groups.
- Evaluated and enhanced the communications plan for BIPOC students.
- Increased diversity in our prospect and inquiry pools by purchasing lists of BIPOC students from a variety of vendors.
- Began discussions on whether to offer selected students travel expenses and lodging for future accepted students’ events held in the spring.
- Contacted all BIPOC students scheduled to be accepted in Early Action to encourage them to file FAFSA.
- Removed a barrier to access by eliminating the application fee.
- Completed review of application scoring to ensure our process is equitable.