General Information

  1. Vice President: Stacey Kostell
  2. Person submitting plan on behalf of Division:

Name: Alexandra Howe
Title: Executive Assistant to the Vice President for Enrollment Management
E-mail address: Alexandra.Howe@uvm
Phone number: 802-656-1394

  1. Departments within the Division:

Office of International Education
Student Financial Services
Undergraduate Admissions

  1. Implementation team members (including team lead/chair):
Name Title Department/Office/Unit
Stacey Kostell Vice President Enrollment Management
Alexandra Howe Exec. Asst. to VP Enrollment Management
Kim Howard Director Office of International Education
Veronika Carter University Registrar Office of the Registrar
Jeremy Pitaniello LTC Military Studies
Marie Johnson Director Student Financial Services
Ryan Hargraves Director Undergraduate Admissions

Pillar 1: Academics

  • Improve retention rates and the percentage of students who graduate in four years.
    1. Successfully implement EAB’s Campus Advising Platform.  In progress.
      1. Have all student services staff and select faculty using software by January 2019, with full faculty integration by Fall 2019.
      2. All Phase One users will send a welcome e-mail to new students before classes begin and meet with their advisees during the first six weeks of the semester.
    2. Continue to develop communication and activities for special interest cohorts; these include: Partnership students, New Americans, Veterans, and Pell eligible students (Catamount Commitment).
  • Utilize transfer students to help meet enrollment goals in programs with capacity.
    1. Continue to work with CCV and UVM Colleges/Schools to expand progression plans to assist in growing transfer enrollment and timely graduation. As new majors are created at UVM, evaluate for possible progression plan from CCV.  In progress.
    2. Create a partnership program with two to three out-of-state community colleges that includes progression plans and scholarships to specific programs in CAS, CALS and possibly CEMS.  Deadline: Fall 2019.
    3. Formalize communication strategies from colleges/schools to enhance the recruitment and enrollment process.  Completed.

Pillar 2: Community 

  • Hold an annual division wide diversity and inclusion training. This occurred in Fall 2017 and we are determining the needs of each unit and best path to move forward.
  • Each unit will host individual training session that enhances and builds upon other professional development training activities. Units will share ideas across departments and the division on a regular basis through staff and director meetings.  Each unit has hosted activities.
    1. Three division-wide workshops/trainings during DEM Meetings. Bring in outside-speakers to facilitate them. Have a division wide committee to select these learning opportunities.  Also task the committee to come up with smaller trainings/workshops that can be done throughout the year and can supplement.  Deadline: Annually.
  • Each unit will designate a point person to guide and coordinate these efforts.  3 out of the 5 units do.  We hope to have 5 out of 5 units doing this by the end of the 2019-2020 academic year.  In progress.
  • Recruit, retain and invest in great people who value diversity; simultaneously work to recruit, support and mentor students of diverse backgrounds.  Deadline: Annually.
  • Enhance the enrollment management culture and awareness at the University of Vermont.
    1. Proactively communicate enrollment management goals and strategies to the broader campus community and improve campus-wide enrollment coordination efforts.
      1. Continue to hold the annual Enrollment Summit meeting for the campus community.
      2. Continue to present at a variety of campus meetings and share quarterly newsletters that include both campus and national enrollment information.
      3. Continue to coordinate the Strategic Enrollment and Recruitment Committee and utilize this group in planning and evaluating recruitment and enrollment strategies.
      4. Continue to hold the Student Finance Campus Partner’s Conference and provide additional workshops and group trainings for academic units representatives. 

Pillar 3: Environment

  • Continue to enhance the globalization of campus by increasing international enrollment and expand global opportunities for current students.
    1. Partner with Study Group to recruit and enroll FTFY international students from diverse countries and backgrounds.
    2. Expand the number of exchange programs (destinations and slots) available to students for study abroad and increase student participation in exchange programs, growing from 33% of semester study abroad ‘semester slots’ in 2017-18, to 40% by end of 2020.  In progress.  2018-2019: 10-year high of semester-length study abroad reached.
    3. Build out Generation Study Abroad initiative to aggressively increase participation in experiential learning abroad and to diversify that participation by end of 2020.
      1. Through DegreeWorks, work with colleges and schools to catalogue the best term(s) – by major – for students to study abroad for a full semester (including what courses a given major should plan to take while abroad) to support four-year graduation rates.
      2. Partner with the Foundation to identify funding to support the UVM Study Abroad Access Grant initiative for Pell-eligible Vermont and partnership high school students beyond 2020 when current funding will be exhausted. One new one-time gift secured.
      3. Build out campus partnerships and develop related strategies to bolster the number of Vermonters, high school partnerships, Pell-eligible and STEM students; students of color; and athletes participating in study abroad. In progress.
  • Expand access to success initiative for low-income and first-generation Vermont residents.
    1. Implement phase two of the Catamount Commitment program for students in their second year at UVM.  Completed.
    2. Evaluate year one of the Catamount Commitment program, and make changes as needed.  The retention goal for FTFY entering 2018 is 92%.
    3. Partner with the Foundation to expand funding and include independent students who are Pell eligible, which will assist with recruiting transfer students.

Pillar 4: Operations

  • Use data informed decisions to determine strategies for recruitment, admissions review, aid awarding and retention.
    1. Re-create the admission review process moving to a more holistic approach: utilize the new essay questions to determine students who are the best fit and develop a new Academic Index (replaces ACE score) as a new tool for predicting yield and student success.  Completed.
    2. Create a simplified scoring process for merit scholarship awards.  Continue to research and develop how to best consider other factors such as rigor, leadership and grit.  Completed.
    3. Serve as one of six schools to create a new pipeline analytics tool with EAB to assist in reaching our enrollment goals.  No longer participating; developing a tool internally.
    4. Continue to redefine the enrollment projections model in collaboration with Budget Office to best predict enrollment by college/school over a five year period.
    5. Utilize data in EAB’s Campus Analytics model to determine retention and progression plans and refine current student communication strategies.
  • Efficiently manage admissions and enrollment process to increase the academic profile and diversity for new first-time, first-year students.
    1. Attract an application pool of increased geographic diversity and academic quality.
      1. Two current open positions will be replaced with counselors who are based out of Southern California and New Jersey. Increase applications by 10 percent in these regions.  Positions hired.
      2. Create infrastructure for recruitment and evaluation of Top Scholars, Honors College and others.  Completed.
    2. Increase applications from qualified male students.
    3. Improve overall academic profile of FTFY students.
      1. Increase the average SAT by at least five points from Fall 2018 score.
      2. Decrease the admit rate from 67% to 65%, with a goal of 60% for students entering fall 2020.
      3. Continue to increase engagement between colleges and schools with students throughout the recruitment and enrollment process.
    4. Increase the overall racial and ethnic diversity of the first-year class.  Completed.
      1. Lead a student of color affinity group in developing and executing a strategic plan.  In progress.
    5. Increase spring FTFY enrollment with a goal to achieve 120 by 2020.
      1. Explore fall semester experiential learning options for students admitted to spring.  In progress.
      2. Increase the number of students who take our fall course for spring admit students.  In progress.
  • Continue to enhance marketing and communications efforts to increase interest from prospective students, families and other key influencers.
    1. Launch the interactive, online campus map and create virtual tours to support recruitment efforts. Completed.
    2. Enhance digital communications strategy, with improved targeting of content to segmented audiences; improve use of analytics to gauge content performance.  In progress.
  • Install handicap accessible door in Student Financial Services and refit offices to ensure they are accessible to individuals in wheelchairs or scooters.  Completed.


Current efforts to advance Inclusive Excellence:

Each department in Enrollment Management coordinates diversity and inclusion activities for staff. Ideas are shared at our VPEM leadership meetings.

Student Financial Services:

  • SFS has a Diversity and Inclusion Committee that identifies training opportunities for staff, activities, books, etc. to provide trainings that all staff will participate and to allow individuals to explore areas of interest or desired growth.
  • All SFS staff are expected to engage in Diversity and Inclusion training/activities in addition to the all staff scheduled events.
  • Maintains a library of books related to Diversity and Inclusion and continually add to them to support staff growth.
  • SFS avails themselves of trainings and webinars related to Diversity and Inclusion that is developed and offered by our Regional and National Financial Aid Associations.
  • Have recently worked to improve our support for transgender financial aid recipients to ensure compliance with regulations but to be more inclusive in sensitive to transitioned students that are required to register for selective service.
  • Have begun to review communications and forms to remove pronouns where possible and to avoid using legal or preferred name in communications that may be accessed or visible to proxy users or others that may not be aware of the student’s gender expression, preferred name to mitigate the risk of exposing information that the student may not be ready or willing to share with others that may be supporting their financial obligations while in attendance.

Office of International Education:

  • Position description minimum qualifications for advisor positions: Do not require a master’s degree. Also do not require experience studying/living in a country other than one’s native country (though we do require evidence of cross-cultural competence/work). The reason (especially on the study abroad side) is that still there are fewer people of color, first-gen, lower-income, or male students who are studying abroad. This gives us the chance to have our hiring pools as diverse as possible.
  • Requiring each staff member to engage annually in at least one professional development activity related to diversity (largely through Professional Learning Services, including Blackboard Jungle).


  • Preferred/Chosen Pronoun and First Name:  RO continues to support the BANNER modifications that allow students to specify a preferred name and pronoun.  Meetings have also occurred with the PRISM Center and SAA to see if LDAP can be used to meet any of these needs for students, faculty and staff.
  • Diversity within the office:  RO focuses on hiring diversity candidates when office vacancies occur.
  • Diversity events and training:  All staff are encouraged to participate in diversity events and training offered by the University.  Diversity sessions are offered at staff meetings and also at the RO staff retreat.


  • Internal Diversity Committee: distributes articles, books, podcasts and other relevant data pertaining to diversity and inclusion in higher education (and more broadly). We also invite speakers to meetings to engage staff on diversity, identity and inclusion and facilitate internal discussion among staff related to D&I. 
  • Revamped evaluation process: use of newly-created qualitative indicators (Adversity/grit, Love of learning, Leadership, Exceptional essay, Extra-curricular involvement, Cultural fluency) and an environmental context dashboard (via College Board) which considers factors about and applicant’s school and community (percentage on free and reduced lunch, neighborhood crime, etc.) has helped produce a more equitable applicant evaluation process.