The above graph shows the escalating financial need among freshmen at private colleges. Specifically, the graph shows that freshmen with greater need enrolled in greater numbers in fall 2010 while freshmen with greater capacity to pay enrolled in smaller numbers, as reported in the Noel-Levitz 2011 Discounting Report. The report is based on a sizable sample of 139 private colleges across the U.S. that partnered with Noel-Levitz to strategically manage their financial aid and discounting during 2009-2010.
As the graph indicates, the proportion of enrolled freshmen that demonstrated financial need increased 11.4 percent in fall 2010 while the percentage of no-need, merit-aid-only students declined 9.3 percent. This continued a shift that emerged in fall 2009 when the proportion of enrolled students that demonstrated financial need increased 18.8 percent and the percentage of no-need, merit-aid-only students declined 17.4 percent.
The graph further shows that the proportion of enrolled freshmen with “high need” increased 17.8 percent in fall 2010. “High need” was defined by the institutions in this study as the highest fifth of incoming freshmen in terms of need and typically included Pell-eligible enrollees.
In response to the increased need, the institutions in the study were able to meet 75.4 percent of need while limiting their overall discount rate to an increase of 1.2 percent.
For details, download the 2011 Discounting Report.
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