I am relieved to know President Slabach has plans to revamp the campus in reaction to this budget cut.
Slabach said all funds for revamping would come from fundraising efforts as well as a $1.8 million grant from the Council of Governments.
After speaking with Slabach, I feel he is on the same page as many of his students. Wesleyan can only compete with surrounding schools through its offer of a small teacher to student ratio. However, as the tuition rose 5 percent this fiscal year, other schools begin to look much more appetizing to the college wallet.
These universities may offer a larger student to teacher ratio, but they also offer a much more aesthetically pleasing campus, a massive amount of amenities such as fitness centers, better meal plans and more campus involvement opportunities.
The athletic departments at these schools offer a more competitive and entertaining environment.
Slabach’s idea to improve the campus with more landscaping and a new student center will definitely increase student enrollment and will allow Wesleyan to compete within its direct market.
The campus center will also allow student organizations and Greek life to grow. He also said improving the website navigation and appearance will be a key factor in student recruitment.
I know as a I searched for graduate schools, the websites were the first impression of every school I researched.
One suggestion I would have would be to show students where the money for their tuition increase is going through improvements that directly affect them.
If changes are not going to be made in the highly outdated dorms, for example, knock down the price to stay there. By improving on little things like living arrangements, the administration has the opportunity to provide students with a real college experience.
All-in-all, Slabach’s plan for campus improvements does seem like a viable solution to the budget cuts caused by a lack of student enrollment.