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Maximize Enrollment by Maximizing Institutional Scholarships

| March 1, 2023 | By

If you’ve been following the state of enrollment in higher education, then you know the outlook is bleak. Despite a few recent bright spots with this year’s freshman class, overall, enrollments have remained relatively flat since Fall 2021. While many say it’s too early to tell if the increase in Fall 2022 freshman enrollments is a positive sign for colleges and universities, the reality is that even if enrollments continue to rise, so, too, will competition for students. 

Stand Out from the Crowd

The number of college applications are on the rise, growing by over 21% between 2019-2020 and 2021-2022. And it’s not because there are more students. It’s because students are applying to more schools than ever before. 

But applying to your institution and actually enrolling are two very different things. Colleges and universities today have to work harder than ever before to compete for top students. They must activate every competitive advantage they have in order to convince students that their institution is the one for them.

Institutional scholarships are an important resource your institution can employ to increase your competitiveness and sway students towards your institution. Unlike federal funds and institutional financial aid packages, institutional scholarships are a flexible way to reach students and provide them with extra financial support. And, because your institution controls these scholarships, you can determine how you will award them in order to maximize your enrollment and reach your goals.


Supporting Scholarship Management with the Right Technology

While it’s true that institutional scholarships provide a way to maximize enrollment, managing them can be tedious and time-consuming. Manual processes and disparate data make it difficult to know whether or not you’ve awarded every eligible dollar, especially when awards are unused, canceled, or unaccented. 

Investing in technology that automates scholarship management enables your scholarship managers and financial aid staff to quickly and efficiently award and re-award scholarships to the students who need them most. 

When evaluating scholarship management tools, it’s important that they deliver a comprehensive set of capabilities that drive efficiency so your scholarships managers and financial aid staff can maximize every available award dollar. Two critical capabilities every scholarship management solution should include are:

  1. Two-way integration: because your student lives in multiple, disparate systems across campus, it’s imperative that your scholarship management solution integrate with your SIS, FAM, and financial systems. That way, your team always has the most up-to-date information on the status of awards so they can redeploy dollars quickly and efficiently.

  2. Auto-packaging: it’s likely that your institution uses complex eligibility criteria and weighting to prioritize your award dollars. Make sure that the technology you select can automatically handle the packaging and repackaging of your awards based on your institution’s specific requirements.

It’s also important that your scholarship management solution provides sophisticated communication capabilities, robust reporting, and dashboard views so your leaders are always in-the-know on the status of your scholarship awards.


Automate Scholarship Management from Application to Award to Reporting

Using complex eligibility criteria, tools like Regent Fund help you gain a complete, integrated view of your student data so you can find and identify qualified students. 

Powerful sorting and weightining capabilities give you the ability to match, rank, prioritize, and identify the right applications for your limited scholarship dollars, allowing you to prioritize awards based on enrollment goals. And with insight into updated data integrated from your FAM, SIS, AR, or other systems, you can quickly redeploy unused, canceled, or unaccepted scholarship dollars to the candidates who need them most.

The competition for students will continue, even if enrollments begin to rebound. Institutional scholarships provide colleges and universities with a flexible way to offer more aid to the students you most want to attend, allowing you to maximize your enrollment and your scholarship awards. 

Ready to learn how Regent Education can help? Schedule a demo today!