MSU Enrollment

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iaafan
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Re: MSU Enrollment

Post by iaafan » Thu Sep 17, 2020 7:53 am

wbtfg wrote:
Thu Sep 17, 2020 5:04 am
A few things jump out at me here.

-great job to Msu staff!

-it looks to me like um is combining the 4 year and 2 year college numbers in this report. It would be interesting to see specific 4 year campus numbers.

-the article says UM’s 400+ enrollment decline was “almost exclusively” freshman. Last year their freshman class was about 1100. Did their freshman class numbers drop 30+%?

-It will be interesting to see how much MSU subsidizes UM this year. If I remember correctly, last year it was in the $18 million range.
I think the numbers for both schools include the 2 year numbers. UM's is about three times as many as MSU's. You could probably knock 1,500 off of UM's headcount and about 500 off ours. I don't believe the numbers have been posted to the MUS website. Once they are we'll know just what's what. UM probably has about 8,000 students. MSU probably 15,500.

If UM only had 1,100 frosh last year and the enrollment decline is almost all frosh, then (750?) freshmen this year. Those numbers won't work out over the years. Keep that up for three more years and you're looking at 3,000 students.



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Re: MSU Enrollment

Post by Team10 » Thu Sep 17, 2020 10:22 am

iaafan wrote:
Thu Sep 17, 2020 7:53 am
wbtfg wrote:
Thu Sep 17, 2020 5:04 am
A few things jump out at me here.

-great job to Msu staff!

-it looks to me like um is combining the 4 year and 2 year college numbers in this report. It would be interesting to see specific 4 year campus numbers.

-the article says UM’s 400+ enrollment decline was “almost exclusively” freshman. Last year their freshman class was about 1100. Did their freshman class numbers drop 30+%?

-It will be interesting to see how much MSU subsidizes UM this year. If I remember correctly, last year it was in the $18 million range.
I think the numbers for both schools include the 2 year numbers. UM's is about three times as many as MSU's. You could probably knock 1,500 off of UM's headcount and about 500 off ours. I don't believe the numbers have been posted to the MUS website. Once they are we'll know just what's what. UM probably has about 8,000 students. MSU probably 15,500.

If UM only had 1,100 frosh last year and the enrollment decline is almost all frosh, then (750?) freshmen this year. Those numbers won't work out over the years. Keep that up for three more years and you're looking at 3,000 students.
Have to keep in mind it takes most of them 7 years to finish so we'll bump it to 5000 total enrollment.
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Re: MSU Enrollment

Post by BigBruceBaker » Thu Sep 17, 2020 11:07 am

coachouert wrote:
Tue Sep 15, 2020 7:55 pm
coloradocat wrote:
Tue Sep 15, 2020 3:37 pm
Congrats to MSU on continued improvement. There are some interesting stats in the article though.
MSU’s retention rate – the percentage of first-year students returning for their second year – hit its highest mark in more than 30 years of modern record keeping at 78.2% percent.
Crazy that they set a record in this department. However, I suppose students may have felt they would be better off coming back to Bozeman and hanging out with their friends than staying home with their parents. Also, many unskilled jobs are probably still be unavailable.
MSU recorded modern-era records in its four- and six-year graduation rates as well. The fall figures showed that the four-year graduation rate was up to 34.7% from 29.7% last year. And the six-year rate — which is commonly looked at in federal statistics — was up slightly to 56.4%.

“One in three of our students is graduating in four years,” Cruzado said. “That is simply amazing.”
I'm not sure how good those numbers are relative to other universities but as nominal percentages they're terrible and prove that too many kids go to college. A college degree generally pays off (results vary across majors of course) but I don't see how dropping out of college can possibly pay off. Based on these numbers more than half of the students should either get a job or find a trade school / community college. They can still try a university later but clearly it's not the correct choice right out of high school. It's too bad high schools have become a feeder system for four year colleges rather than helping students identify the best avenue for success.
Keep in mind that MSU's foundation is built on access and that access mission is grounded in the admission requirements. As long as a student has a 2.5 GPA, 22 ACT or 1120 SAT this past year, they would be admitted. In many other states that have stronger community college systems, many students towards the bottom of those ranges would not be admitted, but have the option to attend a two-year school that is nearby and eventually transfer to a four-year. In MT, we have three community colleges (FVCC, DCC and MCC) and a handful of two year schools that provide both a community college-ish education and technical education (Great Falls College, City College, Highlands College, Missoula College and Helena College) along with the seven tribal colleges. In Montana, depending on where a student is living may have the luxury of attending a CC so they see a four-year school like MSU as the only option even if they need more preparedness. There is also still the stigma for students that after high school you go to college and if you don't, you're a failure which is another challenge in itself.

As an aside, MUS is no longer requiring test scores for students entering in the fall of 2021 so as long as a student has a 2.5 GPA out of high school, they will be admitted to any four-year campus in MT. This will have long-term impacts on graduation and retention for all schools. It'll be interesting to see how that plays out.

In relation to the original post, while these numbers are down compared to where we have been previously, this is a win considering the current climate and all the challenges we are experiencing daily. Between graduating more students this last spring, increasing retention and of course COVID, the faculty and staff at MSU did an excellent job.

Sorry for the long winded post.
Appreciate the input and information!

Really interesting.


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Re: MSU Enrollment

Post by Montanabob » Thu Sep 17, 2020 12:26 pm

BigBruceBaker wrote:
Thu Sep 17, 2020 11:07 am
coachouert wrote:
Tue Sep 15, 2020 7:55 pm
coloradocat wrote:
Tue Sep 15, 2020 3:37 pm
Congrats to MSU on continued improvement. There are some interesting stats in the article though.
MSU’s retention rate – the percentage of first-year students returning for their second year – hit its highest mark in more than 30 years of modern record keeping at 78.2% percent.
Crazy that they set a record in this department. However, I suppose students may have felt they would be better off coming back to Bozeman and hanging out with their friends than staying home with their parents. Also, many unskilled jobs are probably still be unavailable.
MSU recorded modern-era records in its four- and six-year graduation rates as well. The fall figures showed that the four-year graduation rate was up to 34.7% from 29.7% last year. And the six-year rate — which is commonly looked at in federal statistics — was up slightly to 56.4%.

“One in three of our students is graduating in four years,” Cruzado said. “That is simply amazing.”
I'm not sure how good those numbers are relative to other universities but as nominal percentages they're terrible and prove that too many kids go to college. A college degree generally pays off (results vary across majors of course) but I don't see how dropping out of college can possibly pay off. Based on these numbers more than half of the students should either get a job or find a trade school / community college. They can still try a university later but clearly it's not the correct choice right out of high school. It's too bad high schools have become a feeder system for four year colleges rather than helping students identify the best avenue for success.
Keep in mind that MSU's foundation is built on access and that access mission is grounded in the admission requirements. As long as a student has a 2.5 GPA, 22 ACT or 1120 SAT this past year, they would be admitted. In many other states that have stronger community college systems, many students towards the bottom of those ranges would not be admitted, but have the option to attend a two-year school that is nearby and eventually transfer to a four-year. In MT, we have three community colleges (FVCC, DCC and MCC) and a handful of two year schools that provide both a community college-ish education and technical education (Great Falls College, City College, Highlands College, Missoula College and Helena College) along with the seven tribal colleges. In Montana, depending on where a student is living may have the luxury of attending a CC so they see a four-year school like MSU as the only option even if they need more preparedness. There is also still the stigma for students that after high school you go to college and if you don't, you're a failure which is another challenge in itself.

As an aside, MUS is no longer requiring test scores for students entering in the fall of 2021 so as long as a student has a 2.5 GPA out of high school, they will be admitted to any four-year campus in MT. This will have long-term impacts on graduation and retention for all schools. It'll be interesting to see how that plays out.

In relation to the original post, while these numbers are down compared to where we have been previously, this is a win considering the current climate and all the challenges we are experiencing daily. Between graduating more students this last spring, increasing retention and of course COVID, the faculty and staff at MSU did an excellent job.

Sorry for the long winded post.
Appreciate the input and information!

Really interesting.
But a couple things left out, how many are actually working in their field or using their degree after graduation? And you left out we a not a liberal arts and school of dance so graduation does mean something.


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Re: MSU Enrollment

Post by BleedingBLue » Thu Sep 17, 2020 1:21 pm

Team10 wrote:
Thu Sep 17, 2020 10:22 am
iaafan wrote:
Thu Sep 17, 2020 7:53 am
wbtfg wrote:
Thu Sep 17, 2020 5:04 am
A few things jump out at me here.

-great job to Msu staff!

-it looks to me like um is combining the 4 year and 2 year college numbers in this report. It would be interesting to see specific 4 year campus numbers.

-the article says UM’s 400+ enrollment decline was “almost exclusively” freshman. Last year their freshman class was about 1100. Did their freshman class numbers drop 30+%?

-It will be interesting to see how much MSU subsidizes UM this year. If I remember correctly, last year it was in the $18 million range.
I think the numbers for both schools include the 2 year numbers. UM's is about three times as many as MSU's. You could probably knock 1,500 off of UM's headcount and about 500 off ours. I don't believe the numbers have been posted to the MUS website. Once they are we'll know just what's what. UM probably has about 8,000 students. MSU probably 15,500.

If UM only had 1,100 frosh last year and the enrollment decline is almost all frosh, then (750?) freshmen this year. Those numbers won't work out over the years. Keep that up for three more years and you're looking at 3,000 students.
Have to keep in mind it takes most of them 7 years to finish so we'll bump it to 5000 total enrollment.
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Re: MSU Enrollment

Post by El Profesor » Thu Sep 17, 2020 7:25 pm

coloradocat wrote:
Tue Sep 15, 2020 8:51 pm
coachouert wrote:
Tue Sep 15, 2020 7:55 pm
coloradocat wrote:
Tue Sep 15, 2020 3:37 pm
Congrats to MSU on continued improvement. There are some interesting stats in the article though.
MSU’s retention rate – the percentage of first-year students returning for their second year – hit its highest mark in more than 30 years of modern record keeping at 78.2% percent.
Crazy that they set a record in this department. However, I suppose students may have felt they would be better off coming back to Bozeman and hanging out with their friends than staying home with their parents. Also, many unskilled jobs are probably still be unavailable.
MSU recorded modern-era records in its four- and six-year graduation rates as well. The fall figures showed that the four-year graduation rate was up to 34.7% from 29.7% last year. And the six-year rate — which is commonly looked at in federal statistics — was up slightly to 56.4%.

“One in three of our students is graduating in four years,” Cruzado said. “That is simply amazing.”
I'm not sure how good those numbers are relative to other universities but as nominal percentages they're terrible and prove that too many kids go to college. A college degree generally pays off (results vary across majors of course) but I don't see how dropping out of college can possibly pay off. Based on these numbers more than half of the students should either get a job or find a trade school / community college. They can still try a university later but clearly it's not the correct choice right out of high school. It's too bad high schools have become a feeder system for four year colleges rather than helping students identify the best avenue for success.
Keep in mind that MSU's foundation is built on access and that access mission is grounded in the admission requirements. As long as a student has a 2.5 GPA, 22 ACT or 1120 SAT this past year, they would be admitted. In many other states that have stronger community college systems, many students towards the bottom of those ranges would not be admitted, but have the option to attend a two-year school that is nearby and eventually transfer to a four-year. In MT, we have three community colleges (FVCC, DCC and MCC) and a handful of two year schools that provide both a community college-ish education and technical education (Great Falls College, City College, Highlands College, Missoula College and Helena College) along with the seven tribal colleges. In Montana, depending on where a student is living may have the luxury of attending a CC so they see a four-year school like MSU as the only option even if they need more preparedness. There is also still the stigma for students that after high school you go to college and if you don't, you're a failure which is another challenge in itself.

As an aside, MUS is no longer requiring test scores for students entering in the fall of 2021 so as long as a student has a 2.5 GPA out of high school, they will be admitted to any four-year campus in MT. This will have long-term impacts on graduation and retention for all schools. It'll be interesting to see how that plays out.

In relation to the original post, while these numbers are down compared to where we have been previously, this is a win considering the current climate and all the challenges we are experiencing daily. Between graduating more students this last spring, increasing retention and of course COVID, the faculty and staff at MSU did an excellent job.

Sorry for the long winded post.
I think the part of your post that I bolded is the biggest issue that needs to be overcome. There's definitely a lack of community colleges in Montana (makes sense considering our small and spread out population) but it sure seems like they would be a better option for a majority of high school graduates, at least for the first year or two. I assume Gallatin College belongs in one of your two lists as well by the way. It would be great if high schools instituted a program where they educated students on options post-HS as well as financial life skills and provided them with a look at what kind of options there are for each path (university, community college, tech school, jobs that don't require post-HS ed). I think a lot of kids just go to college because that's what they assume they have to do.
With all due respect to Coach Ouert and his responsibilities at MSU (assuming that he's in the same (or a similar) role as when I was at MSU), Colorado Cat is spot-on accurate with his or her concerns. Waaaay too many students go straight from high school into four-year universities for at least two reasons. One is that, as CO Cat says, high-school graduates are not *nearly* sufficiently informed about the different educational paths (noted in parentheses above) or about the career options available at the ends of the different educational paths. The second is already noted by both posters: "kids just go to college because that's what they assume they have to do" [CO Cat] and "the stigma for students that after high school you go to college and if you don't, you're a failure which is another challenge in itself" [Coach O].

Nick Adams writes a pretty good book ("Class Dismissed") on the topic of university education not being for everyone. The book's content seems pretty darn obvious to any of us who think about this issue a lot. But, I think that it can be insightful for any students (and their families) who opt for "college because that's what they assume they have to do".

I have three major complaints about college education being over-emphasized in terms of its importance. (My first and third complaints should ideally be addressed via high-school guidance counseling. The second pertains to incentives not being aligned.)

The first one is that too many high-school graduates are entirely too clueless about what they want to do with the adult phases of their lives. Rather than meandering through a four-year university education, changing majors a few times, and perhaps ultimately graduating, these people would be better off by waiting for a few years before entering college. They can instead work, or spend a few years in the military ... giving themselves some time to think, evaluate options, have exposure to other avenues in life, toughen up, and mature. (Too many incoming, traditional-age freshmen are entirely too immature, mentally.)

My second complaint is that too many students choose majors that don't easily translate into decent-paying jobs with decently high employment rates upon graduation. Such students often graduate with large amounts of debt, only to get jobs that were almost equally accessible if the students had pursued them straight out of high school (or definitely out of trade school or a two-year community college). [Many of these students are the ones that we hear about in the news, the ones who want their $50,000 student-loan debts cancelled.]

One of the main problems here is that incentives are misaligned. While I strongly disagree with these people being allowed to forgo their debt obligations, I do believe that they have a sometimes-legitimate gripe. They were encouraged to pursue certain majors that offer relatively poor prospects for employment in the relevant fields after college. Some fields have a decent number of jobs but waaay too many people with degrees in this field, making for supply-demand mismatch. Other fields just have so very few legitimate jobs that the issue is simply a shortage of jobs.

The incentive misalignment is as follows. Without a doubt, one motivation of a university is to remain profitable ... or at least break even, financially. Obviously, students bring positive gross profits (revenues less expenses), so universities have an incentive to admit and enroll students. [Sidenote: This statement about positive gross profits is true for flagship institutions in university systems. It's usually untrue for the 'satellite' campuses, which are often subsidized by the money-making institution(s) in the university system.] Of course, not every student wants to be educated in a field with almost-guaranteed solid post-graduation employment (such as engineering, accounting, or nursing). So, academic programs still lure students in, while being unable to promise plentiful, gainful employment opportunities at the end.

My suggestion is that universities need to have more skin in the game. I envision some sort of mechanism where the university would promise to repay, say, 30% or 40% of a student's debt if, upon that student's graduation, he or she is unable to secure decent employment in the field in which he or she was educated. The definition of "decent employment" is beyond the scope of this post.

My third complaint is that *many* people would be better off, lifelong-wise, if they pursue a trade career such as welding, plumbing, radiology, dental hygiene, heating/ventilation/air-conditioning, auto repair, aircraft maintenance, etc. Often, a person can graduate in these fields roughly two or three years sooner than if pursuing a four-year education ... meaning sooner access to healthy, steady income streams ... and, importantly, entering trade fields where jobs are relatively plentiful. Instead, various parties along the way steer this category of student in the wrong direction (namely, toward a degree at a four-year institution).

With all of this said, I think that Coach Ouert and his krew at Montana State University are doing a great job. The retention rates, graduation rates, and other statistics quoted by Coach are all very impressive. MSU has solid administrators, many excellent professors, and great non-educational staff.

I will close with something that I simply want all of you to think about, though. Higher graduation rates can be achieved in one of two ways. One is to maintain high standards and have students and faculty put forth tons of new, extra effort so that (i) students master material to high levels and (ii) the university thus maintains its high standards. Another way, however, is to lower the standards, keep the aforementioned effort levels the same as before, and have students master material to lesser levels by the time that they graduate. This thought is not at all specific to MSU; it's something to think about across all of academia as universities everywhere are tasked by their Regents to make improvements along the lines mentioned in Coach Ouert's post.

Thanks for reading! I'm pretty passionate about this topic.

-Greg Durham



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Re: MSU Enrollment

Post by coloradocat » Thu Sep 17, 2020 8:41 pm

El Profesor wrote:
Thu Sep 17, 2020 7:25 pm
coloradocat wrote:
Tue Sep 15, 2020 8:51 pm
coachouert wrote:
Tue Sep 15, 2020 7:55 pm
coloradocat wrote:
Tue Sep 15, 2020 3:37 pm
Congrats to MSU on continued improvement. There are some interesting stats in the article though.
MSU’s retention rate – the percentage of first-year students returning for their second year – hit its highest mark in more than 30 years of modern record keeping at 78.2% percent.
Crazy that they set a record in this department. However, I suppose students may have felt they would be better off coming back to Bozeman and hanging out with their friends than staying home with their parents. Also, many unskilled jobs are probably still be unavailable.
MSU recorded modern-era records in its four- and six-year graduation rates as well. The fall figures showed that the four-year graduation rate was up to 34.7% from 29.7% last year. And the six-year rate — which is commonly looked at in federal statistics — was up slightly to 56.4%.

“One in three of our students is graduating in four years,” Cruzado said. “That is simply amazing.”
I'm not sure how good those numbers are relative to other universities but as nominal percentages they're terrible and prove that too many kids go to college. A college degree generally pays off (results vary across majors of course) but I don't see how dropping out of college can possibly pay off. Based on these numbers more than half of the students should either get a job or find a trade school / community college. They can still try a university later but clearly it's not the correct choice right out of high school. It's too bad high schools have become a feeder system for four year colleges rather than helping students identify the best avenue for success.
Keep in mind that MSU's foundation is built on access and that access mission is grounded in the admission requirements. As long as a student has a 2.5 GPA, 22 ACT or 1120 SAT this past year, they would be admitted. In many other states that have stronger community college systems, many students towards the bottom of those ranges would not be admitted, but have the option to attend a two-year school that is nearby and eventually transfer to a four-year. In MT, we have three community colleges (FVCC, DCC and MCC) and a handful of two year schools that provide both a community college-ish education and technical education (Great Falls College, City College, Highlands College, Missoula College and Helena College) along with the seven tribal colleges. In Montana, depending on where a student is living may have the luxury of attending a CC so they see a four-year school like MSU as the only option even if they need more preparedness. There is also still the stigma for students that after high school you go to college and if you don't, you're a failure which is another challenge in itself.

As an aside, MUS is no longer requiring test scores for students entering in the fall of 2021 so as long as a student has a 2.5 GPA out of high school, they will be admitted to any four-year campus in MT. This will have long-term impacts on graduation and retention for all schools. It'll be interesting to see how that plays out.

In relation to the original post, while these numbers are down compared to where we have been previously, this is a win considering the current climate and all the challenges we are experiencing daily. Between graduating more students this last spring, increasing retention and of course COVID, the faculty and staff at MSU did an excellent job.

Sorry for the long winded post.
I think the part of your post that I bolded is the biggest issue that needs to be overcome. There's definitely a lack of community colleges in Montana (makes sense considering our small and spread out population) but it sure seems like they would be a better option for a majority of high school graduates, at least for the first year or two. I assume Gallatin College belongs in one of your two lists as well by the way. It would be great if high schools instituted a program where they educated students on options post-HS as well as financial life skills and provided them with a look at what kind of options there are for each path (university, community college, tech school, jobs that don't require post-HS ed). I think a lot of kids just go to college because that's what they assume they have to do.
With all due respect to Coach Ouert and his responsibilities at MSU (assuming that he's in the same (or a similar) role as when I was at MSU), Colorado Cat is spot-on accurate with his or her concerns. Waaaay too many students go straight from high school into four-year universities for at least two reasons. One is that, as CO Cat says, high-school graduates are not *nearly* sufficiently informed about the different educational paths (noted in parentheses above) or about the career options available at the ends of the different educational paths. The second is already noted by both posters: "kids just go to college because that's what they assume they have to do" [CO Cat] and "the stigma for students that after high school you go to college and if you don't, you're a failure which is another challenge in itself" [Coach O].

Nick Adams writes a pretty good book ("Class Dismissed") on the topic of university education not being for everyone. The book's content seems pretty darn obvious to any of us who think about this issue a lot. But, I think that it can be insightful for any students (and their families) who opt for "college because that's what they assume they have to do".

I have three major complaints about college education being over-emphasized in terms of its importance. (My first and third complaints should ideally be addressed via high-school guidance counseling. The second pertains to incentives not being aligned.)

The first one is that too many high-school graduates are entirely too clueless about what they want to do with the adult phases of their lives. Rather than meandering through a four-year university education, changing majors a few times, and perhaps ultimately graduating, these people would be better off by waiting for a few years before entering college. They can instead work, or spend a few years in the military ... giving themselves some time to think, evaluate options, have exposure to other avenues in life, toughen up, and mature. (Too many incoming, traditional-age freshmen are entirely too immature, mentally.)

My second complaint is that too many students choose majors that don't easily translate into decent-paying jobs with decently high employment rates upon graduation. Such students often graduate with large amounts of debt, only to get jobs that were almost equally accessible if the students had pursued them straight out of high school (or definitely out of trade school or a two-year community college). [Many of these students are the ones that we hear about in the news, the ones who want their $50,000 student-loan debts cancelled.]

One of the main problems here is that incentives are misaligned. While I strongly disagree with these people being allowed to forgo their debt obligations, I do believe that they have a sometimes-legitimate gripe. They were encouraged to pursue certain majors that offer relatively poor prospects for employment in the relevant fields after college. Some fields have a decent number of jobs but waaay too many people with degrees in this field, making for supply-demand mismatch. Other fields just have so very few legitimate jobs that the issue is simply a shortage of jobs.

The incentive misalignment is as follows. Without a doubt, one motivation of a university is to remain profitable ... or at least break even, financially. Obviously, students bring positive gross profits (revenues less expenses), so universities have an incentive to admit and enroll students. [Sidenote: This statement about positive gross profits is true for flagship institutions in university systems. It's usually untrue for the 'satellite' campuses, which are often subsidized by the money-making institution(s) in the university system.] Of course, not every student wants to be educated in a field with almost-guaranteed solid post-graduation employment (such as engineering, accounting, or nursing). So, academic programs still lure students in, while being unable to promise plentiful, gainful employment opportunities at the end.

My suggestion is that universities need to have more skin in the game. I envision some sort of mechanism where the university would promise to repay, say, 30% or 40% of a student's debt if, upon that student's graduation, he or she is unable to secure decent employment in the field in which he or she was educated. The definition of "decent employment" is beyond the scope of this post.

My third complaint is that *many* people would be better off, lifelong-wise, if they pursue a trade career such as welding, plumbing, radiology, dental hygiene, heating/ventilation/air-conditioning, auto repair, aircraft maintenance, etc. Often, a person can graduate in these fields roughly two or three years sooner than if pursuing a four-year education ... meaning sooner access to healthy, steady income streams ... and, importantly, entering trade fields where jobs are relatively plentiful. Instead, various parties along the way steer this category of student in the wrong direction (namely, toward a degree at a four-year institution).

With all of this said, I think that Coach Ouert and his krew at Montana State University are doing a great job. The retention rates, graduation rates, and other statistics quoted by Coach are all very impressive. MSU has solid administrators, many excellent professors, and great non-educational staff.

I will close with something that I simply want all of you to think about, though. Higher graduation rates can be achieved in one of two ways. One is to maintain high standards and have students and faculty put forth tons of new, extra effort so that (i) students master material to high levels and (ii) the university thus maintains its high standards. Another way, however, is to lower the standards, keep the aforementioned effort levels the same as before, and have students master material to lesser levels by the time that they graduate. This thought is not at all specific to MSU; it's something to think about across all of academia as universities everywhere are tasked by their Regents to make improvements along the lines mentioned in Coach Ouert's post.

Thanks for reading! I'm pretty passionate about this topic.

-Greg Durham
:goodpost:

I agree with everything you said. It's a hard problem to solve because it takes significant buy in from two parties with no incentive to put forth the effort (high schools and universities).

I went to a terrible high school which has significantly influenced my perspective but even in public schools that are just ok it's totally up to the guidance counselor (and his/her relationship with the administrators as far as job preservation) for what kind of counseling the students receive, if any.

Universities know that they can pull kids in with "fun" majors and keep charging them year after year (I wonder what the graduation rate and timeline is by department) and provide a "well rounded educational experience". I still remember my favorite class - American Popular Music. I was never going to major in music just because I liked playing the piano and listening to Led Zeppelin. I love music, history, political science, etc but even in college I knew better than to major in something that's better left as an interest/hobby. If the primary employment field for your chosen major is to teach in a university I'm not sure it should be a field of study that confers a bachelor's degree (no offense to the liberal arts people out there).

Unfortunately I don't see the high school problem ever getting fixed. I like your idea of making universities partially responsible for paying off student debt if they gave students degrees that didn't lead to a job in a related field. The politics of pulling something like that off (I assume it would have to be a federal program since that's where the loans come from) seems insurmountable though. I don't think any student loans should be forgiven, the responsibility should just be shared.


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Re: MSU Enrollment

Post by St George » Sun Oct 04, 2020 10:21 am

In regards to dUMb’s enrollment I am seeing adds for student housing in Missoula on social media. At the same time MSU has students on waiting lists for housing.



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Re: MSU Enrollment

Post by specscat » Mon Oct 05, 2020 12:19 am

wbtfg wrote:
Thu Sep 17, 2020 5:04 am
A few things jump out at me here.

-great job to Msu staff!

-it looks to me like um is combining the 4 year and 2 year college numbers in this report. It would be interesting to see specific 4 year campus numbers.

-the article says UM’s 400+ enrollment decline was “almost exclusively” freshman. Last year their freshman class was about 1100. Did their freshman class numbers drop 30+%?

-It will be interesting to see how much MSU subsidizes UM this year. If I remember correctly, last year it was in the $18 million range.
UM include Missoula College and MSU includes Gallatin College.

UM does appear to have a nice census enrollment page though to look at UM and Missoula College separately.
https://www.umt.edu/institutional-resea ... llment.php

I did not find similar on MSU site.
MSU does have a page for downloading PDF enrollment reports.
https://www.montana.edu/opa/enrollment/index.html

I will have to give UM credit here.
I would like to see MSU have similar census enrollment reporting site comparable to UM.



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Re: MSU Enrollment

Post by iaafan » Mon Oct 05, 2020 10:18 am

specscat wrote:
Mon Oct 05, 2020 12:19 am
wbtfg wrote:
Thu Sep 17, 2020 5:04 am
A few things jump out at me here.

-great job to Msu staff!

-it looks to me like um is combining the 4 year and 2 year college numbers in this report. It would be interesting to see specific 4 year campus numbers.

-the article says UM’s 400+ enrollment decline was “almost exclusively” freshman. Last year their freshman class was about 1100. Did their freshman class numbers drop 30+%?

-It will be interesting to see how much MSU subsidizes UM this year. If I remember correctly, last year it was in the $18 million range.
UM include Missoula College and MSU includes Gallatin College.

UM does appear to have a nice census enrollment page though to look at UM and Missoula College separately.
https://www.umt.edu/institutional-resea ... llment.php

I did not find similar on MSU site.
MSU does have a page for downloading PDF enrollment reports.
https://www.montana.edu/opa/enrollment/index.html

I will have to give UM credit here.
I would like to see MSU have similar census enrollment reporting site comparable to UM.
It would be nice to get a number for main campus MSU-only students. Total is 16,249, but I'd guess about 600-700 at Coll of Tech. UM has 8,657 main campus students, 1,161 at the Coll of Tech. So probably around 15,500 at MSU main campus. That'd be about 6,850 more students at MSU. Not quite double.



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Re: MSU Enrollment

Post by PapaG » Mon Oct 05, 2020 1:07 pm

grizzh8r wrote:
Tue Sep 15, 2020 11:28 pm

Or, start an apprenticeship, get paid a good wage while learning a trade, have zero student debt, and start out after the apprenticeship is over at a very decent wage with what going forward will likely be a skill set of high demand. Just yesterday I read a ThomasNet article about this very thing, and the looming labor crisis on the horizon for American manufacturing due to the lack of the younger generation going into the skilled trades.

While I will raise my kids to pursue something after high school, I will NOT force college on them There is nothing wrong with being a Tradesperson.
My younger daughter is a sophomore in HS and has more interest in a trade like learning to be a welding or electrician than she does going to college to find something to study. My older daughter is a senior and looks like she’s going to either USC, San Diego State, or Arizona State because she’s done with the rain in the NW, with UO her fallback. She won’t even consider UDub she’s so over living winters here for 17 years.

Nothing wrong with trade school and all kids are different, which is what we are telling our sophomore. There is no shame in a career in a trade and women are greatly underrepresented in those fields.


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Re: MSU Enrollment

Post by coachouert » Mon Oct 05, 2020 2:09 pm

PapaG wrote:
Mon Oct 05, 2020 1:07 pm
grizzh8r wrote:
Tue Sep 15, 2020 11:28 pm

Or, start an apprenticeship, get paid a good wage while learning a trade, have zero student debt, and start out after the apprenticeship is over at a very decent wage with what going forward will likely be a skill set of high demand. Just yesterday I read a ThomasNet article about this very thing, and the looming labor crisis on the horizon for American manufacturing due to the lack of the younger generation going into the skilled trades.

While I will raise my kids to pursue something after high school, I will NOT force college on them There is nothing wrong with being a Tradesperson.
My younger daughter is a sophomore in HS and has more interest in a trade like learning to be a welding or electrician than she does going to college to find something to study. My older daughter is a senior and looks like she’s going to either USC, San Diego State, or Arizona State because she’s done with the rain in the NW, with UO her fallback. She won’t even consider UDub she’s so over living winters here for 17 years.

Nothing wrong with trade school and all kids are different, which is what we are telling our sophomore. There is no shame in a career in a trade and women are greatly underrepresented in those fields.
Wish more people shared this perspective with their kids and I say that as someone on the college side. There's such a negative stigma about trade schools or apprenticeships and I don't understand it in the slightest. Do what makes you happy.


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Re: MSU Enrollment

Post by RickRund » Mon Oct 05, 2020 4:40 pm

coachouert wrote:
Mon Oct 05, 2020 2:09 pm
PapaG wrote:
Mon Oct 05, 2020 1:07 pm
grizzh8r wrote:
Tue Sep 15, 2020 11:28 pm

Or, start an apprenticeship, get paid a good wage while learning a trade, have zero student debt, and start out after the apprenticeship is over at a very decent wage with what going forward will likely be a skill set of high demand. Just yesterday I read a ThomasNet article about this very thing, and the looming labor crisis on the horizon for American manufacturing due to the lack of the younger generation going into the skilled trades.

While I will raise my kids to pursue something after high school, I will NOT force college on them There is nothing wrong with being a Tradesperson.
My younger daughter is a sophomore in HS and has more interest in a trade like learning to be a welding or electrician than she does going to college to find something to study. My older daughter is a senior and looks like she’s going to either USC, San Diego State, or Arizona State because she’s done with the rain in the NW, with UO her fallback. She won’t even consider UDub she’s so over living winters here for 17 years.

Nothing wrong with trade school and all kids are different, which is what we are telling our sophomore. There is no shame in a career in a trade and women are greatly underrepresented in those fields.
Wish more people shared this perspective with their kids and I say that as someone on the college side. There's such a negative stigma about trade schools or apprenticeships and I don't understand it in the slightest. Do what makes you happy.
A GEAT decision... She will be making some serious dough very soon.



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Re: MSU Enrollment

Post by onceacat » Mon Oct 05, 2020 11:11 pm

RickRund wrote:
Mon Oct 05, 2020 4:40 pm
coachouert wrote:
Mon Oct 05, 2020 2:09 pm
PapaG wrote:
Mon Oct 05, 2020 1:07 pm
grizzh8r wrote:
Tue Sep 15, 2020 11:28 pm

Or, start an apprenticeship, get paid a good wage while learning a trade, have zero student debt, and start out after the apprenticeship is over at a very decent wage with what going forward will likely be a skill set of high demand. Just yesterday I read a ThomasNet article about this very thing, and the looming labor crisis on the horizon for American manufacturing due to the lack of the younger generation going into the skilled trades.

While I will raise my kids to pursue something after high school, I will NOT force college on them There is nothing wrong with being a Tradesperson.
My younger daughter is a sophomore in HS and has more interest in a trade like learning to be a welding or electrician than she does going to college to find something to study. My older daughter is a senior and looks like she’s going to either USC, San Diego State, or Arizona State because she’s done with the rain in the NW, with UO her fallback. She won’t even consider UDub she’s so over living winters here for 17 years.

Nothing wrong with trade school and all kids are different, which is what we are telling our sophomore. There is no shame in a career in a trade and women are greatly underrepresented in those fields.
Wish more people shared this perspective with their kids and I say that as someone on the college side. There's such a negative stigma about trade schools or apprenticeships and I don't understand it in the slightest. Do what makes you happy.
A GEAT decision... She will be making some serious dough very soon.
I agree with 99% of what everyone here is saying...but as a tradesperson myself, active in trades education projects...Theres nothing wrong with spending 4 years getting a degree and going into the trades either. I'd say 75% of the tradesmen & women I know have college degrees, and very few of them regret the time or money they spent on college education.

Avoiding the debt is key. If you don't take out $50k in loans, a degree in philosophy or history may make you very happy as you are sweating pipe, pulling wires, bending nails, or whatever you choose to do with that degree.

It kinda rubs me wrong when people act like getting an education is a waste if you end up in the trades.



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Re: MSU Enrollment

Post by btribby » Tue Oct 06, 2020 7:31 am

onceacat wrote:
Mon Oct 05, 2020 11:11 pm
RickRund wrote:
Mon Oct 05, 2020 4:40 pm
coachouert wrote:
Mon Oct 05, 2020 2:09 pm
PapaG wrote:
Mon Oct 05, 2020 1:07 pm
grizzh8r wrote:
Tue Sep 15, 2020 11:28 pm

Or, start an apprenticeship, get paid a good wage while learning a trade, have zero student debt, and start out after the apprenticeship is over at a very decent wage with what going forward will likely be a skill set of high demand. Just yesterday I read a ThomasNet article about this very thing, and the looming labor crisis on the horizon for American manufacturing due to the lack of the younger generation going into the skilled trades.

While I will raise my kids to pursue something after high school, I will NOT force college on them There is nothing wrong with being a Tradesperson.
My younger daughter is a sophomore in HS and has more interest in a trade like learning to be a welding or electrician than she does going to college to find something to study. My older daughter is a senior and looks like she’s going to either USC, San Diego State, or Arizona State because she’s done with the rain in the NW, with UO her fallback. She won’t even consider UDub she’s so over living winters here for 17 years.

Nothing wrong with trade school and all kids are different, which is what we are telling our sophomore. There is no shame in a career in a trade and women are greatly underrepresented in those fields.
Wish more people shared this perspective with their kids and I say that as someone on the college side. There's such a negative stigma about trade schools or apprenticeships and I don't understand it in the slightest. Do what makes you happy.
A GEAT decision... She will be making some serious dough very soon.
I agree with 99% of what everyone here is saying...but as a tradesperson myself, active in trades education projects...Theres nothing wrong with spending 4 years getting a degree and going into the trades either. I'd say 75% of the tradesmen & women I know have college degrees, and very few of them regret the time or money they spent on college education.

Avoiding the debt is key. If you don't take out $50k in loans, a degree in philosophy or history may make you very happy as you are sweating pipe, pulling wires, bending nails, or whatever you choose to do with that degree.

It kinda rubs me wrong when people act like getting an education is a waste if you end up in the trades.
This has been a really awesome thread to read. The sentence I bolded is something I have never thought about. Which shows how naïve I really am. My wife is a middle school and high school english teacher. We talk about promoting the idea of trade schools all the time. We live in Wyoming where a trade is something that is needed and there are a ton of high paying jobs (maybe no different than anywhere else). She says that (at least in WY) there has definitely been a shift in including trade schools as an option post high school. In fact, its talked about a lot. Kids are always asking/telling her that they want to be a welder or an electrician or diesel mechanic and she promotes that big time. However, those conversation usually stem from that fact that they dont like english class. Haha.


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WeedKillinCat
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Re: MSU Enrollment

Post by WeedKillinCat » Tue Oct 06, 2020 11:03 am

Had I gone to college right out of high school I would have flunked out. My interests back then were keeping the brewery in Olympia going! I had no desire to go to college my interests were in building trades and I took as many building trades classes at Great Falls High as I could before I graduated. I gathered a lot of hands on trades skills from different jobs before I enrolled at MSU as an non traditional student. I wouldn't trade those for the world and used those skills to repair my vehicles, boat and houses. There is nothing wrong with trade schools and I wish there was more emphasis in high schools on them instead of telling kids that they need to go straight to college, especially for young men. Girls/women are more driven and focused.


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