How St. Thomas University increased enrollment

Streamlining processes helped this small, four-year institution bring in a record class.

St. Thomas University logo with purple background


To streamline processes, drive efficiency, and increase enrollment, St. Thomas University partnered with Ellucian, ultimately resulting in a record undergraduate class. St. Thomas increased full-time undergraduate enrollment from 900 to 1,200 with the help of Ellucian’s Managed Services.

St. Thomas University’s President David A. Armstrong, J.D. reflects on the initiative.

Our headcount a year ago was 4,200 students—sounds like a lot. The problem with that is we only had 900 full-time undergraduate students and about 550 full-time at the law school. Those are the students that pay the bills, and so we knew we had to increase those numbers.


The student population that makes up the 4,200 is a lot of dual-enrollment classes, part-time online. There's not a lot of revenue out of those sources. So, we really concentrated in year one in increasing our full-time enrollment at the university and the law school.

Now starting this fall, we are at 1,200 full-time undergraduate students and over 600 in the law school. So, we went from 1,450 to 1,800, and so that's obviously a positive trend. Now we have a data point. We want to create a positive trend.

How a technology partnership is helping to increase enrollment

I will have to admit, we have not used technology well, and so that's been our biggest challenge. I think we could have done even better. Even though we had a record year, I think we could have done even better.

But as we are working with our partner, Ellucian, we are working through these issues so that we believe that we're going to be able to increase that enrollment in a more effective, efficient, and less costly manner.

Streamlining those processes, getting rid of as many manual input and data situations as we can, that's been the biggest change that we've done so far.

And you know, I would say, obviously, it's effective because the proof's in the pudding. We've brought in a record class and right now, we're running ahead of that record class.

David A. Armstrong, J.D.
St.Thomas University

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