Butler University has increased both its number of applications received and the number of admittances extended for the class of 2016.
Tom Weede, vice president for enrollment management, said that Butler has admitted about 6,300 students for next semester.
“That was right around our goal for what we were hoping to admit,” he said.
Weede said that that number could rise even higher because of late applicants, late sports recruits or specialty performers in the Jordan College of Fine Arts.
Weede said that the ideal size of the class of 2016 is about 1,000 students, just a bit above the size of the current freshman class.
Dropping from 6,000 admitted students to 1,000 enrolled students may seem difficult, but Dean of Admission Scott Ham said the office of admission made a concerted effort to admit a high number like this.
“Nationally trending, students are applying to more institutions,” Ham said. “Because students are applying to more schools, we have to make more offers of admission.”
This is a 9 percent increase in the number of offers from last year.
Ham said that ease of applying to college is one reason for this.
“The Common Application makes it so easy to apply to 10 or 15 schools simply by clicking a link,” he said.
In addition, the office saw an increase in the total number of applications it received. More than 9,500 students applied to Butler. This is a 3 percent increase from last year, building on the 41 percent increase in 2010.
Success of the Butler men’s basketball team is still a major reason for the increase.
“I think the basketball tournaments the last couple years have introduced the university to people who didn’t know about it before,” Weede said. “But the nice thing is people don’t enroll at a college because it has a good basketball team. They enroll because it has the right size, fit, location, majors.”
Lade Akande, an admission counselor, said that basketball success is only the first step.
“They (high school students) got on the web and realized that Butler is a small, liberal arts school, the class sizes are small, there are not teaching assistants,” Akande said. “They found out all these great things, and that’s what drew them to Butler even more.”
Akande, who works with high school students from not only the Midwest but also the Southeast and Puerto Rico, said that the championship appearances have also increased the number of out-of-state applications.
Ham said that a final factor in the growth of applications is word-of-mouth, starting with students.
“They go home and talk about what a great experience they had,” Ham said. “The best promotion that Butler University can have is a satisfied student.”
BY THE NUMBERS
9,658 students have applied this year—a 3 percent increase from 2011.
About 6,300 have been admitted so far—an increase of 9 percent.
The goal size for the class of 2016 is about 1,000 students.