This year, the Bob Schieffer College of Communication was up in enrollment by 6.9 percent as of the 12th day of classes, according to a report published by the TCU Office of Institutional Research.
With an increase in enrollment, departments within the college have had to adjust their programs accordingly to accommodate more students.
Strategic Communication has been working on enrollment management for the last three years, according to program director Jacqueline Lambiase.
“We still are working to see how we can limit enrollment a little bit, because we have to be sure we are matching our resources with the number of students we have,” Lambiase said.
While excited about the renewed interest in the Strategic Communication program, Lambiase said she acknowledges the challenge that comes with managing such a large number of students.
“We want to make sure we are delivering TCU’s educational promise to all of our students, so we have to be careful with that as our numbers continue to grow,” Lambiase said.
While the number of students in the college has gone up this year, Bob Schieffer College of Communication Dean Kristie Bunton, who joined TCU this year, said she is cautious to keep these statistics in perspective.
“One semester doesn’t establish a trend. This year’s statistics could be an artifact of the fact that the overall class size is up so much this year,” Bunton said.
Bunton echoed the concerns brought up by Lambiase when asked if the college could continue to support classes of increasing size.
“Could we support an enormous number of new students here in the Bob Schieffer College of Communications?” No,” Bunton said. ”
“But, we definitely have the ability to flex and make the most out of available enrollment space in our current programs.”
Teachers and administrators aren’t the only ones who have been impacted by the influx of students into the program this semester. Students themselves have noticed the increase in the number of people in their classes.
Junior strategic communication major Josiah Wilseck has felt the pinch of the increased enrollment in communication programs.
“The classes this year are definitely a bit bigger than they have been in the past,” Wilseck said. “Ultimately, though, like with any class, you are going to have kids drop out, which definitely helps even out some of the numbers.”
Sophomore strategic communication major Chris Dorr has also seen an increase in the number of students in his classes this semester, but said the increase hasn’t changed the overall TCU experience.
“Class sizes are pretty large this semester, but I feel like if I really needed help, I could go into office hours and both of my teachers would know my name,” Dorr said.