Despite consolidation, Augusta State sees more applications for fall

Augusta State University will cease to exist in eights months as it consolidates with Georgia Health Sciences University, but more students are applying for enrollment this fall at ASU, officials said.

New freshman applications are up 12.3 percent over last year and non-freshman transfer applications are up 19.1 percent, said Carol Rychly, vice president for academic affairs. Overall, ASU received 2,204 applications for the fall semester, compared with 1,963 the year before, she said. The school has accepted 807 new applications, compared with 688 the year before, Rychly said.

Because the school does not have a cutoff date, as the University of Georgia and Georgia Tech do, how many will actually enroll won’t be known until late summer, Rychly said. Last year, 71 percent of those accepted enrolled, she said.

“We weren’t really sure what impact that (consolidation) would have on enrollment,” Rychly said.

GHSU President Ricardo Azziz, who will become president of the consolidated university in January if the change is accepted by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, called it positive news.

“If anything, things are looking up,” he said.

GHSU has also seen an 8 percent rise in applications to its professional schools, Provost Gretchen Caughman said. The school has received 4,500 applications for 780 slots, she said.

One area of decline for ASU was in students to the University College and Life Enrichment programs. University College is for those applicants whose SAT scores were too low or who lacked credits necessary for admittance, while Life Enrichment is for students who have been out of school for five years or more who might lack requirements, Rychly said. Those applications declined by 35 percent, but officials are not sure why. Azziz said it might be that those applicants are taking a look instead at Augusta Technical College or other outlets.

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