Goal 1: Improving Access and Affordability

Access to public higher education, in which affordability is a critical factor, is essential to social mobility and the future of our knowledge-based economy and democratic society. Equity in opportunity is a core American value, and education is the main means by which people gain access to rewarding careers, prosperity and personal fulfillment.

As Salisbury University approaches its 100th anniversary, we are mindful of the strides we, as a campus and as a society, must make in improving access to higher education for all citizens. Aligning our campus with the broader demographic trends of our community and State reflects our commitment to equity of opportunity and also our obligation to sustain the University’s good stewardship of public resources.

National trends suggest that over the next decade, high school graduates will be much more diverse in terms of their race, ethnicity and college preparation. The University will prepare for this trend by developing targeted strategies to meet the needs of college-bound students and those seeking graduate, professional and continuing education. We have much evidence to support the claim that our modest class sizes and emphasis on integrated mentoring by faculty and professional staff promote student development and success, notably and demonstrably among first-generation students. Our aim, therefore, is continued reflective instruction and mentoring in response to the needs and talents of students enrolled at the main campus while targeting the bulk of enrollment growth at regional centers and satellite locations and in online programs. Additionally, SU will explore opportunities to expand its reach by offering alternative enrollment pathways designed to serve an increasingly diverse student population, including more flexible course schedules to accommodate early college, non-degree and non-traditional enrollments, including non-credit continuing education. 

As a public, comprehensive university, an important part of SU’s mission is to provide an affordable education to its students. Goal 1 of SU’s 2020-2025 Strategic Plan also identifies strategies that will be used to develop comprehensive financial aid and tuition plans to maintain the University’s affordability. This will help ensure SU’s access and affordability while accommodating the changing landscape of higher education.

Objective 1.1 - Improve access and increase enrollment utilizing strategies developed in the Strategic Enrollment Plan

  • Strategy 1.1.1. Enhance and expand programs and services that meet the needs of students with increasingly diverse demographics, goals, preparation and physical locations.
  • Strategy 1.1.2. Increase undergraduate enrollment within strategic areas through careful monitoring of State and national trends and program capacities.
  • Strategy 1.1.3. Develop a comprehensive enrollment and marketing strategy to grow graduate programs.
  • Strategy 1.1.4. Facilitate opportunities for flexible scheduling and alternative forms of program delivery such as online and at regional centers, and ensure parity across modes.
  • Strategy 1.1.5. Build a comprehensive strategy to grow a continuing and professional education program (See Goal 2 for additional strategies).
  • Strategy 1.1.6. Increase access to teacher education programs to serve students interested in teaching careers and to address critical teacher shortage areas in Maryland that directly impact student preparation for college.

Objective 1.2 - Increase affordability to support the continued enrollment of a diverse student body.

  • Strategy 1.2.1. Create a comprehensive and sustainable financial aid strategy.
  • Strategy 1.2.2. Evaluate impacts of variable costs for undergraduate degree programs.
  • Strategy 1.2.3. Continue to seek increased base funding for the University.
  • Strategy 1.2.4. Support a deeper understanding of the value and impact of philanthropy within and beyond the campus community.