Future Enrollment Planning Task Force Recommendations for New Student Class

February 12, 2021

To the George Washington University Community:

Through committed collaboration and active shared governance, the university’s Future Enrollment Planning Task Force (FEPTF), comprised of representatives from the faculty, staff, and student body, has developed and endorsed target recommendations for the Fall 2021 new undergraduate class profile. In consultation with the Faculty Senate, university leadership, and the Board of Trustees Committee on Strategic Enrollment, the university will move forward with these recommendations, which prioritize academics, diversity, and meeting a larger portion of students’ financial need.

I charged the task force in November with conducting data reviews during their discussions in order to develop target recommendations for the Fall 2021 new undergraduate class profile for a post-pandemic environment. Over the FEPTF’s two months of meetings, I asked them to be aspirational and creative, guided by a set of principles emphasizing academic talent, diversity, a safe campus environment, an appropriately-sized student body, and a high-quality student experience.

In consideration of the complex 2021 admissions cycle, as well as the disproportionate impact the pandemic has had across broad segments of society, the recommendations include:

  • Targeting a student class headcount of between 2,475 and 2,550 first-year students, in addition to a new undergraduate transfer student class of between 150 and 300;
  • Maintaining and improving the new student class in numerous areas, including the academic profile, underrepresented students, and better financial support for lower-income students;
  • Remaining cognizant of the mix of first year and transfer students, in order to better balance academic program enrollments and to ensure a rewarding student experience;
  • Anticipating a slightly lower headcount for new international students.

The FEPTF’s work has continued this semester, using the recommendations as a jumping-off point in discussions for a longer-term enrollment plan, which will continue to prioritize a dynamic student body at GW. At the request of the Faculty Senate, we will integrate the task force’s efforts within the senate committees and operations.

I am extremely grateful for the hard work of the task force members and the contributions of all the members of our community who provided insight that allowed the task force to make informed and strategic decisions. Let me also extend my sincere thanks to Jay Goff, Vice Provost for Enrollment Management and Student Success. Jay’s transparency, patience, and know-how were key to leading the group to a collective recommendation. This aspirational work is shaping GW’s future for the better.


M. Brian Blake
Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs