Thursday, September 20, 2018

What Do Students Look For in a School?


Since early 2018, Emmanuel Lalande has been vice president for enrollment management at Benedict College in Columbia, South Carolina. In this role, Emmanuel Lalande oversees multiple offices with an eye toward the recruitment and retention of students.

When choosing a school to attend, students assess several factors, some of which may compete with each other. While every student's needs are different, some factors are almost always associated with quality.

A high four-year graduation rate often indicates a good choice, but other factors can confound the numbers. Extremely selective colleges often have high graduation rates due to the preparations students made beforehand. Schools with large numbers of students in professional programs, such as nursing or education, may have reduced four-year graduation rates due to the program length, as well.

A low student-to-faculty ratio can also be a strong indicator. Due to research pressures placed on some faculty, however, there are often diminishing returns on this value since some faculty members may be more occupied with research rather than instruction. Healthy ratios tend to be about 15 students per faculty member, though as high as 20 isn't unheard of.

Students also look at unique social factors for the school. Clubs, special interest groups, or health and wellness facilities can help draw students' eyes and retain them.

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Dr. Emmanuel Lalande currently serves as the vice president for enrollment management at Benedict College in Columbia, South Carolina. He...