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Strategic Enrollment Management

Achieving our mission in a sustainable way requires informed, strategic, enterprise-level solutions. This is the work of Strategic Enrollment Management and it belongs to all SUNY Plattsburgh stakeholders.

A way of working together to sustain enrollment health for the benefit of all students, Strategic Enrollment Management (SEM) has evolved to become a powerful system for colleges and universities to take better control of their enrollment destiny.
Wayne Sigler

Strategic Enrollment Management (SEM) is a body of knowledge and set of best practices. It’s holistic, evidence-based, future-oriented, campus-specific, and community-centered. Some foundational SEM assumptions include the following:

  • Strategic problems demand strategic solutions, not merely those which are tactical or operational.
  • The tides of our greater ecosystem — including our marketplace — are ever shifting. We embrace this reality and seek every opportunity to align our campus planning goals with this larger external context.
  • Enrollment is properly managed within an academic context.
  • Success lies in being systematic and comprehensive across the spectrum of campus activities, with maximum collaboration and functional partnerships that overcome siloes.
  • Our aim is nothing less than optimal outcomes across the interconnected areas of student recruitment, retention, and on-time progression to graduation.


What does it cost to lose an enrolled student? What are our institutional priorities and how do we all fit into them? What kind of college are we? What kind of college do we wish to become? What’s the roadmap to get there?

Such questions are the province of a Strategic Plan, and our current version is now coming to closure. The Provost’s Office has begun a campus-wide effort to initiate the planning process that will result first in a new strategic vision that is compelling both to us and our consumers, is informed by our values, and which will identify the future state with which we seek to align.

Beginning the SEM Planning Process

Through widespread campus conversations in the fall of 2017, the Provost’s team has initiated awareness of core SEM planning principles and the urgent need for action. The ultimate goal is to achieve a SEM Plan that is informed by our Strategic Plan that is developed within and sustained by a SEM-infused environment.

The SEM Plan will seek to:

  • stabilize enrollments, using care to balance mission-grounded factors of prestige, access, revenue, and diversity
  • align academic programs with the needs of our marketplace and the future state of the college identified in our shared vision
  • optimize resources
  • improve services
  • improve quality
  • reduce vulnerability to environmental forces
  • evaluate strategies and tactics to track what works and change what doesn’t.
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