One thing that has resulted from the ensuing COVID-19 pandemic has been a surge in graduate school applications and college transfers. The pandemic has no doubt forced many to reconsider their options. Reasons include trying to minimize expenses in a struggling economy or prioritizing experiences that can be obtained elsewhere. Students have had to make some tough decisions about their higher education. We will analyze these changing trends in graduate school and transfer student admissions marketing next.
Graduate School Admissions
A recent report from the Association of American Medical Colleges shows an 18% increase this year in medical school applications nationwide compared to 2019. There has also been an average 20% growth for leading MBA schools and almost a 30% increase in law school applications. Although these numbers are preliminary, this trend is predicted to last throughout the pandemic.
There are a few factors behind this recent surge, but most namely the weakened economy. This has caused the job market to decline. Without a job secured, many college graduates have become inclined to reconsider their options. They apply to graduate programs in hopes of continuing their professional careers. This may ultimately cause graduate programs to become more competitive in the coming year, but it may also mean full graduate programs for marketers and recruiters to capitalize on.
Many students’ college enrollment plans have gone through waves of uncertainty during the pandemic. As a result, student movement between colleges has become more popular. Many colleges have taken different approaches in managing COVID-19 on their campuses. Some have invited students back, and some have decided to remain fully remote. This vital decision has caused students to re-evaluate their university choices and priorities. They subsequently transfer schools if their current situation is no longer viable.
There has also been a trend for students directly impacted by the pandemic to move to schools that cost less, are closer to home, or stop school all together for the time being. Either way, this movement between schools will be something to keep an eye on for the coming semesters.
With the spring semester in full swing, it is essential to be conscious of the students looking to transfer or apply to graduate school in assessing your recruitment process and marketing. Be mindful of many student’s uncertainties and the decisions they have to make.