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Southern Connecticut State University
4 minute read

Redefining Markets to Surpass Enrollment Goals


For nearly 130 years, Southern Connecticut State University (SCSU) has offered students the opportunity to “discover their strengths, seize new career-focused opportunities, and establish strong bonds.” However, its location presented both challenges and opportunities to the admissions team’s recruitment efforts. While being located in New Haven, Connecticut, gave the university credibility as one of five higher education institutions in the area, it also faced strong regional competition leading to a loss of students in its primary market. Additionally, the SCSU team recognized its data limitations and knew that it needed to develop a strategy to make data-driven decisions in order to reverse enrollment declines.


SCSU turned to its enrollment partner, Encoura, to develop a strategy that included understanding and investing in the right markets to boost student engagement and enrollment. The admissions team leveraged the Encoura Platform and the Smart+® predictive model to organize and interpret its data in meaningful ways that empowered it to clearly present a plan to leadership, refocused travel on its most strategic markets, and developed parent/guardian communications with double-validated email addresses. Additionally, consulting strategy sessions with its Encoura reps led to identification of growth markets, transition of campaigns from written to video content, and changes in its annual yield event.

Funnel Optimization

Strategic Enrollment Consulting

Funnel & Market Analysis

Advanced Student Search

Encoura Combined Data Set

Smart+® Predictive Model

Declared Student Connection™


Parent/Guardian Emails


Enrollment Lens®

Class Planner®

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When our leadership asks for our reasons behind strategies to pursue students in specific markets, the Encoura Platform quickly provides easy-to-understand content that’s quickly downloaded to show the data behind our decisions. We’re able to show which students are the best fit and likelihood to enroll and how we’re investing our time at their high schools, which has strengthened our trust from and collaboration with our leadership.
Director of Admissions
Director of Admissions logo


Through its renewed strategy, Southern Connecticut State University strengthened its prospective student events, developed a new and effective family engagement communication plan, and boosted the reputation of its programs, experiencing especially strong increases in enrollment in health care studies and nursing. The university successfully ended the year with an 11% increase in applications, reduced melt by 6 points, and secured enrollment that exceeded its goal by 5%. SCSU looks forward to continuing to work with Encoura for further recruitment, engagement, and enrollment success.

Website engagement 5 times higher than previous campaigns
72% deposit rate by yield event attendees
Website engagement 5 times higher than previous campaigns
Increased parent engagement
Website engagement 5 times higher than previous campaigns
11% increase in applications (12% for out-of-state apps)
Website engagement 5 times higher than previous campaigns
Enrollment goal surpassed by 5%

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