University of Colorado Boulder President Todd Saliman announced Friday in his President’s News letter that he and other CU Boulder representatives will begin traveling to communities across the state later this year in an effort to increase college enrollment and graduation rates.
In his statement, Saliman highlights CU leadership as a public research university, where graduates “fill critical jobs and contribute to communities in Colorado and beyond.” Over the past year, however, CU Boulder Freshman retention rates for the 2020-2021 semester saw a two percent decrease overall. With their five-year Innovating for the Future strategic plan, the president and Board of Regents are looking to convince people hesitant to apply that it’s a worthy investment.
“This is a time of uncertainty and transition in the world and higher education,” Saliman said. “Before the pandemic, some questioned the value of a four-year degree. COVID has fueld their doubt.”
The announcement comes at a time where enrollment is not just down for CU Boulder, but universities nationwide as college enrollment declines by the largest margin in the past decade, fueled by uncertainties amid the pandemic.
The university is confident that through both their five-year plan and upcoming community outreach, this slump can be reversed. “As we travel the state this year, we’ll be listening closely,” Saliman said in closing. “We’re eager to know what Coloradans want and need from CU. We want to hear from you. Just as the university has been central to my life’s story, you are a critical part of CU’s story.”