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Jan. 17, 2006
CONTACT: Ward Mullens
734.487.4400
ward.mullens@emich.edu

Regents approves restructuring of scholarship program

YPSILANTI - The Eastern Michigan University Board of Regents approved the restructuring of the general fund scholarship program to help increase enrollment and improve retention at its regular meeting Jan. 17.

“EMU recently partnered with Noel-Loevitz to conduct a comprehensive study of the impact of scholarships and financial aid on enrollment decisions,” said Courtney McAnuff, vice president for enrollment services at EMU. “This study supports the need to overhaul Eastern’s scholarship program and strategically use scholarships and financial aid to help increase the size and academic quality of our entering classes, target limited resources to retain students at higher levels, and increase net total tuition revenue.”

The Noel-Levitz study found that merit based scholarship recipients have the highest rate of retention; students who are in the middle need ranges and are solid academic achievers are more likely to enroll if they are awarded merit aid; students who live on-campus are retained at a higher rate than those who do not; retention of transfer students can be improved if institutional awards are made earlier; and renewal awards help to retain students.

McAnuff said that the restructuring would help EMU strengthen the next freshman class by getting more students to enroll. If more students enroll, then retention rates should improve. He said one of the most significant differences in the new structure is that most of the awards would be renewable, whereas in the past they were one time awards.

Phase I of the restructuring will require additional funding of $654,000 for the 2006-07 General Fund Scholarships. That money will be used to increase Regents Scholarships from $2,600 to $3,000 and add 50 Great Lakes Scholarships for international students. It also will add funding for new Eagle Scholarship and Regents Gold awards and target students who have at least a 3.0 high school grade point average.

Phase II of the restructuring would go into effect for 2007-08 and would change the method of funding merit and need based institutional aid from a flat dollar amount to a tuition discount model. This phase is scheduled to be presented to the board in March.

Three scholarship programs will be eliminated and the funding will be redirected to a general achievement award and a need-based grant. The value of the Regents and Recognition of Excellence Scholarships for students who are granted waivers of the residence hall requirement will be reduced.

“If you increase your investment in scholarships then you have the opportunity to increase your enrollment of students,” McAnuff said.

            Eastern Michigan University is a public, comprehensive university that offers programs in the arts, sciences and professions. EMU prepares students with the intellectual skills and practical experiences to succeed in their careers and lives, and to be better citizens.

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Eastern Michigan University is a public, comprehensive university that offers programs in the arts, sciences and professions. EMU prepares students with the intellectual skills and practical experiences to succeed in their career and lives, and to be better citizens.

Editor's Note: Looking for an expert source for a story? Check out EMU's Eastern Experts online at www.emich.edu/univcomm/easternexperts.


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