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Washington State University Office of the Provost

Recruiting the next class of Cougs

Alive! participants walk past the Elson S. Floyd Cultural Center during a walking tour Tuesday, June 6 in Pullman.

Our next class of Cougars is nearly formed after well over a year of recruiting, communicating, preparing, confirming, and orienting by dedicated WSU staff and faculty.

We expect to welcome around 4,000 freshman students in the fall at the WSU Pullman campus, and we’re very excited about their futures. WSU is bringing in well-prepared students who have a very good chance of succeeding at WSU and moving on to rewarding careers. The incoming freshman class is expected to have an average high school grade point average over 3.4, continuing an upward trajectory over the past four years.

Faculty play crucial roles, both directly and indirectly, in the recruitment process. Eric Godfrey, Executive Director of Enrollment Management Programs, says the Future Cougars of Distinction event on campus earlier this year was just one example of faculty’s immense influence on prospective students. More than 70 percent of the 300 students who attended the Future Cougars of Distinction event committed to WSU.

“Faculty are very involved in recruiting, and I think they’re optimistic that the students coming in appear to be serious and well prepared,” says Eric Godfrey, Executive Director of Enrollment Management Programs. “The Future Cougars of Distinction event was a powerful testimony for faculty involvement.”

Last fall, WSU enrolled more than 30,000 students system-wide. Exact numbers will be available in September, but enrollment is expected to remain relatively level as students continue to seek WSU for its academic excellence, rich college atmosphere and excellent tradition.

“In our communication with students we are talking about the value proposition of WSU and the qualities that make WSU unique,” Godfrey says. “We’ve worked really hard to bolster the institution’s academic reputation and celebrate where WSU is in the marketplace. Our guiding principle in recruiting is to identify students for whom WSU would be a good fit, who would have a high likelihood of success here.”

Godfrey says historical trends and statistical analysis help his team to key in on recruiting students who profile similar to students who’ve been successful at WSU in the past. The approach is helping to increase demand, and ultimately will result in a greater number of students graduating from WSU.

The state and the nation will ultimately benefit, as WSU serves its land-grant mission of producing highly qualified and engaged citizens for the workforce. We educate a high number of first-generation students (36 percent of last year’s freshman class) and the diversity of our student population continues to outpace the state’s general population by a wide margin.

The exact numbers will not be available until September, but we look forward to welcoming around 4,000 freshman students to the Pullman campus this fall.

We appreciate all of our faculty and staff for playing important roles in grooming the next generation of Cougs!

Washington State University