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Faculty Senate hears update on enrollment, student experience

The Faculty Senate on Wednesday received an update on Northeastern’s work to recruit, retain, and engage today’s learners, from meeting the full demonstrated need of all freshman financial-aid applicants to offering greater educational flexibility for students.

Philomena Mantella, senior vice president and CEO of the Northeastern University Global Network, delivered to the Senate her annual report covering enrollment, the student experience at Northeastern, and the growth of the Global Network.

“We’ve always been an institution that has been on our high-talent students’ list, and we do quite a good job, when we are low on a prospective student’s list, of showcasing our institution and education and moving the student toward making a decision for Northeastern,” Mantella said.

Mantella underscored the university’s ability to not only enroll students who may not have had Northeastern high on their lists, but also retain those students into their second year. Northeastern boasts a 96 percent retention rate in that regard.

Factors driving the university’s success in enrollment and retention, Mantella said, include its increasing investment in financial aid for all incoming students—both first year and transfer students—and programs like NUterm, a Summer I program that allows rising second-year students to stay on campus for part of the summer and earn credits. NUterm provides students greater flexibility to customize their learning experiences and offers co-curricular activities designed to build class spirit and enrich student life.

Northeastern recently announced it will launch a regional campus in Toronto next year, adding to the Global Network’s portfolio of regional campuses in Charlotte, North Carolina, Seattle, and Silicon Valley. Mantella said this network plays a key role in growing Northeastern’s graduate professional programs and meeting the needs expressed by employers and learners in those areas.

Also at Wednesday’s meeting, the Senate unanimously approved a resolution to rename the Bachelor of Science in Environmental Studies program in the College of Professional Studies to the Bachelor of Science in Environmental Science.

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