Virtual recruitment buoys UNLV enrollment during pandemic

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Christopher DeVargas

First year Hospitality student Alexa Soda, and her mother Krista, arrive on campus at UNLV to move into the dorms, Tuesday Aug. 18, 2020. This year, because of the COVID-19 pandemic, UNLV has taken extra precautions in order to maintain social distance and safety for students while moving in.

Wed, Oct 14, 2020 (2 a.m.)

UNLV has been able to maintain its enrollment numbers during the coronavirus pandemic through a “well-executed pivot to virtual recruitment activities,” said Kris Shay, executive director of admissions.

“We developed virtual information sessions and increased our outreach to prospective students,” Shay said.

UNLV’s undergraduate enrollment of 25,869 students this school year was nearly flat, 39 more than last year’s enrollment of 25,830.

Graduate student enrollment was down by about 2.9%, 4,261 this year compared to 4,387 last year.

A survey of more than 600 universities nationwide showed undergraduate enrollment down an average of 2.5% and graduate enrollment up 3.9%, according to the National Student Clearinghouse Research Center.

UNLV’s undergraduate enrollment “speaks volumes about UNLV as a university of choice, particularly for Nevada students who represent slightly over 85% of enrollment,” the university said in a news release.

Freshman applications hit a record high 13,223, a 4% increase from 2019, according to the news release.

To further attract more students, UNLV has reduced some fees and is working with internet providers to help students without access get connected at discounted rates.

About 80% of UNLV’s courses are being offered online only during the pandemic.

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