University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma

University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma


Achieving enrollment growth at the University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma is a challenge because admissions standards are raised annually, meaning students who meet the academic standards one year, would not necessarily meet them the next. The university wanted to continue raising its academic bar while still increasing freshman enrollment, but had reached a limit of the enrollment results they could achieve on their own.


The University began working with Ruffalo Noel Levitz on strategic enrollment planning and intensive goal setting to help determine future goals and the way to achieve them. The university moved from speaking of goals in general terms to setting concrete goals in writing. The admissions office advanced its operations by strategizing its territory management and moving towards automated data tracking for inquiries and applications, allowing them to keep in better contact with prospective students.


The University looks at enrollment management in a new way: They are now recruiting students to progress through graduation, not just enter their freshman class. They have also recognized the importance of retention in enrollment management best practices. The University regained its freshman class, growing first-time freshman enrollment by 18.5 percent in 2010, a huge accomplishment considering the school has the highest admissions standards in the state of Oklahoma.

For seven years now, the University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma has been featured as U.S. News and World Report's ranking #1 Best in the West University. In August of 2010, the school was featured on the Today show for its achievements and quality education offerings alongside Yale and Harvard.


"I was new to the world of enrollment management and experienced the '[Ruffalo Noel Levitz]' slap in the face when I attended the National Conference on Student Recruitment, Marketing, and Retention. I was floored by all of the things I learned that we should have been doing! Back on campus, I had the '[Ruffalo Noel Levitz] aftershock'—how do we implement all of this on our own? We worked with [Ruffalo Noel Levitz] on strategies we felt would make the biggest impact and right away we began to see the bigger picture of enrollment management.

"The philosophies [Ruffalo Noel Levitz] passed on have made so much sense Our consultant always says 'us' and 'our school.'

"Working with [Ruffalo Noel Levitz] hasn’t just been about our buy-in with them… it’s been about their buy-in with us. Our consultant cares so much about who we are, what our goals are, and what makes us unique—he is really a part of our team, making his recommendations that much more respected and trusted by everyone on campus."

Kellee Johnson
Director of Admissions

Case study used with the permission of University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma

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