Southeastern Illinois adopts diverse strategies to curb flagging enrollment
Replacing a worn-out gymnasium sound system and turning up efforts to battle a decline in enrollment took priority at the Southeastern Illinois College (SIC) Board of Trustees meeting recently.
The board approved the use of bond funds to replace the sound system after it quit working right before the Greater Egyptian Conference. Bids were collected quickly in an effort to install the new system before events leading up to graduation.
A system has been rented in the meantime.
The board also stressed the need to address a 14 percent decline in the high school population, which has impacted the college system. Administrators are looking at new ways to grow enrollment, including building initiatives with a State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement, partnerships with industry and K-12 neighbors, and niche markets, such as archery.
“We can’t just be reactive all the time," Board President Jonah Rice said. "We have to be proactive at the same time to survive this crisis in Illinois.”
SIC has found archery to be a good draw for new students, and it plans to expand the archery program from a 3-D team to add an indoor team that would use a pole barn structure.