Jamison Guice, Campus Carrier Staff Writer
The 2018 freshman class has begun paying deposits for the 2018 academic year. With each upcoming class, Berry finds new faces and backgrounds to welcome to the community.
Andrew Bressette, Vice President for Enrollment Management, said that student deposits are how the department can begin to estimate the number of students.
Bressette said that the number of applicants is an unreliable representation of the student body since it serves only to express interest in attending Berry. Once a student pays a deposit, however, become a committed member of the Berry community.
“There are currently 363 deposits,” Bressette said. “Last year at this time we had 399 deposits.”
Since the students have until mid-May to make a deposit, the current amount can still increase. Bressette said that the number of applicants, acceptances and FAFSA completions have all increased from 2017.
“In the recent years, high school seniors seem to take longer to make up their minds and decide where they want to go,” Bressette said. “This year is continuing that same pattern.”
Bressette said that it is not uncommon for deposits to seem low at this point in the year. He said that the low rates stem from students picking the right financial aid package, financial aid appeals and the right college. Specifically, Bressette said that female deposits are lower than male at this time.
To encourage students to come to Berry and consequently finalize their decision, a campaign began in Spring 2018. The campaign was called “Letter to Home” and featured Berry juniors and graduating seniors writing about their personal and professional lives. The letters explained why each student personally chose Berry and how it contributed to their development.
“Deans and department chairs were asked to nominate students that were thought to have good engagement and good stories to share,” Bressette said. “We tried to make sure we were choosing a breadth of different programs and a balance of gender and diversity.”
The student writers that were nominated represented different experiences and life paths. The intention was to make sure the reader could visualize themselves at Berry when reading the letter. By including a variety of writers, he wants to target applicants that have not yet decided and raise deposit rates.