Miami University offered a record number of scholarships to the incoming class of 2022, yet a large margin declined the offers.
Upon request, the office of student enrollment services said they do not have exact data regarding numbers of students who were offered scholarships compared to the numbers of students who accepted them.
Brent Shock, associate vice president for student enrollment services said competition in higher education may be partially to blame for the declined offers.
“We offer a certain number of admission spots knowing that a certain percentage of students will not take us up on that offer,” Shock said. “The same is true for scholarships. We know that we always over-offer scholarships — well beyond what our budget would be. We know that it is very competitive field right now in higher education and there is a declining enrollment in Ohio students.”
Despite having a decreased number of accepted scholarships, the class of 2022 still set a university record — 3,954 inbound students make up the largest and most diverse class in Miami’s history.
Shock said despite accepting larger classes each year for the past few years, there has been a declining number of high school students in general across the country.
“I mean that, literally, there are fewer Ohio students moving through the K-12 educational system right now,” Shock said. “The population is decreasing in Ohio, and that is true for other parts of the country.”
According to the Western Interstate College of Higher Education, the U.S. is entering into a stagnant period after 15 years of consistent increases in high school graduates.
“Our academic quality is not lagging,” Shock said. “In fact, it has increased over the last few years. We are on par with Ohio State and ahead of Ohio University and Kent State.”
The Common Data Sets of both Miami University and Ohio State include data supporting this.
Shock thinks there is nothing the university could point to that contributed to the decline in student yield.
Shock added that he believes “prestige” is not an issue, since the decline in yield is a trend across the country, not just at Miami.
The admissions office is in the process of putting together what they believe to be improved initiatives to make Miami better-known nationwide. These efforts include placing regionally-based Miami recruiters in the western states and eastern seaboard, reevaluating current scholarship strategies and guaranteeing certain scholarship amounts to certain students—which is a new concept.
Shock said Miami is hopeful for a better return on scholarship offers in the future.