Liberal arts colleges navigate tough terrain
That’s about all the time that a college admission representative likely has to influence a potential student at a high school college fair, estimates Gail Berson, Wheaton’s vice president of enrollment and marketing, who has been in the field for 35 years.
“Students and parents stroll through crowded high school gyms or convention centers overwhelmed by choice and choked by the thought of what college costs,” she says. “In a tight economy, parents are increasingly concerned about what we call ‘the value proposition.’ It’s incumbent upon us to make the case clearly and convincingly that a liberal arts education is the best preparation for life, regardless of career choice.”
Berson and her team repeatedly have made the case so convincingly that this academic year Wheaton welcomed its largest first-year class in the college’s history. Not only are the 480 students in the Class of 2016 a testament to the success of the college’s intensified push to attract students in a highly competitive market, but also a vote of confidence that the liberal arts are still valued, says President Ronald A. Crutcher. [Read more...]