Budget cuts and large numbers of applicants are a formula that makes it very tough to get college acceptance.
Interestingly, it is the public colleges and state universities where admission will be hardest in the next couple years. Most states are having to cut back so state universities and public colleges have to limit enrollments due to loss of faculty, courses, and resources. It is a bad time to cut enrollments because the number of applicants to college is increasing in this bad economy. People with less income need the lower public college/university tuition, people out of jobs need retraining, and people graduating from two-year degrees are deciding to extend their educations to a four-year degree rather than enter a depressed job market.
When most public colleges and universities would generally accept all qualified applicants, they now not only have to be more picky but can be more picky. Also higher-tuition-paying, non-resident students are looking more appealing than lower-tuition-paying in-state residents.
Where, then, should students apply to avoid the crush? This may be the time to consider a private college. Private colleges’ application pools have remained about the same in size for the present. Private colleges also offer smaller and less-crowed classes. Because private schools are less likely to cut faculty and courses, students are more likely to be able to fit in their requisites and graduate in four years. Finally, private schools often have more financial aid for their needs-based applicants.
If your grades prohibit you from applying to more selective private colleges, your next best move may be to apply to a public university out of state. You will pay more tuition than for your own state’s university but have a better chance to gain admission as an out-of-state student. State universities/colleges to stay away from are those in big, hard-hit states. We have all read about California’s schools. They are cutting all of the 10 campuses of the University of California, and California’s 110 community colleges are saturated with students. Other states with budgets problems that will affect their public post-secondary schools are Nevada and Florida.