WSU closes freshman admissions, will delay offers to transfers - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

WSU closes freshman admissions, will delay offers to transfers

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PULLMAN, Wash. - Washington State University announced Monday that it is not accepting any more applications for incoming freshmen at its Pullman campus.

Admissions officials in Pullman will continue to review transfer students' applications, but will make no more enrollment offers to transfers at this time. Once WSU has more complete budget information, expected by May 1, the university will likely re-open admissions only to transfer students who have already earned their associates' degree.

The Tri-Cities, Vancouver and Spokane campuses are continuing to accept applications at this time.

"In the spirit of openness and transparency, we believe it is important for us to let students know we have made this decision so that, if they have not yet applied, they will have time to make other plans," said John Fraire, vice president for enrollment management. "In light of the likelihood of budget cuts, we need to do more to control our enrollments."

The most recent budget plans from the Senate and the House called for overall reductions in WSU's budget of 20 percent and 29 percent respectively. In response to those budget plans, university officials estimated that they would have to reduce enrollment by about 1,500 students university-wide over the biennium.

The university, which enrolled a record number of freshmen last fall, has received 12,338 applications from first-time freshmen seeking admission for fall 2010. Typically, WSU cuts off that application process to the Pullman campus May 1. Admissions officials currently estimate the university will be able to accommodate a freshman class in Pullman of 3,300-3,400, as compared to 3,411 the university enrolled in fall 2009.

Fraire said, "We are trying to strike the proper balance between accommodating the growing demand for a WSU education and protecting the quality of the educational experience those students will receive at a time of limited resources."

For planning purposes, it is easier for the university to accommodate transfer students who already have two-year degrees, because those students usually have already chosen the course of study they will pursue. Transfer students who come to WSU before receiving a degree are likely to require more general education courses and officials are uncertain whether the upcoming budget will provide the university with the flexibility to meet their needs.

- Washington State University

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