Report Reveals Trends Among Competitors for Non-Enrolling Admits

Prospective first-year students are applying to more colleges than ever, resulting in declining yield rates at universities across the nation. In fall 2014, 19 percent of admitted freshmen enrolled at DePaul, comparable to fall 2013.

What happens to those students who do not enroll here? Where do they go?

EMM’s Institutional Research and Market Analytics (IRMA), using data from the National Student Clearinghouse, recently released a comprehensive report to answer those questions about students who apply to but do not enroll at DePaul.

The collected data for fall 2014 show that the top destinations for DePaul’s non-enrollees are similar across academic programs* and are located within the Midwest region. Of non-enrolling freshmen, 17 percent chose to attend either the University of Illinois at Chicago, Loyola University or the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. These top three destinations for freshmen have remained consistent for many years.

Less than 5 percent of non-enrolled freshmen attended a two-year public institution in fall 2014, comparable to fall 2013. The top two-year institutions for non-enrolled freshmen were the College of DuPage, Moraine Valley Community College and William Rainey Harper College.

The report also looks at traditional-age transfer applicants (those under 24 years old) who did not enroll. The destinations for this population paralleled non-enrolling freshmen as 17 percent of non-enrolling transfers chose to attend either the University of Illinois at Chicago, Loyola University or the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Overall, the report found that a larger proportion of non-enrolled freshmen (37 versus 35 percent) and traditional-age transfers (31 versus 27 percent) enrolled at four-year public institutions over four-year private institutions in fall 2014. The choice of a public institution over a private institution suggests affordability or perception of affordability may be a factor in non-enrolled admits’ decisions.

The National Student Clearinghouse (NSC), a nonprofit organization that verifies post-secondary and secondary student enrollment and degrees, collects data from more than 3,600 participating public and private institutions across the U.S. According to NSC, this accounts for 98 percent of enrolled students, though for-profit universities have a lower participation rate.

A summary report of IRMA's findings can be downloaded here. DePaul faculty and staff interested in accessing the full interactive report, including data for each academic program, may do so as Tableau users or contact Karolynn Horan, associate director of reporting for IRMA, for access.

*Top competitors remain similar across academic programs with exceptions in conservatory programs such as Music and Theatre.