‘Summer Melt’ contributes to uncertainty behind enrollment numbers


    The class of 2019 enrollment number will not be finalized until the fall.

    This is due to the “summer melt.” According to Heath Einstein, director of first year admission, the summer melt involves a percentage of the incoming class choosing another university.

    “We think of this process as one in which we know exactly which campus we should be at,” Einstein said. “That’s not a reality for some students—uncertainty plays a big role.”

    Einstein said students that cannot choose a university may decide to deposit to multiple schools, attend each orientation and make a decision.

    TCU’s deposit is $900 and Einstein says most universities charge $500. He said this is an initiative to combat the summer melt.

    “We changed our deposit amount a few years ago,” Einstein said. “This has helped us see a decrease in the melt because many families don’t want to lose $900.”

    Some students are willing to lose $900. During the summer, students have to make additional decisions.

    For some students, the realities of the tuition costs appear in July.

    Einstein said it is important for parents and students to have honest conversations about financing a college education.

    “It’s one thing to have a financial aid package that tells you what the overall cost is,” he said. “It’s different once July hits, the bill comes in and mom and dad have to cut a check.”

    Einstein said some students are removed from the wait list at other universities, or they change their mind.

    “We realize TCU isn’t the top choice for some students that decide to come,” Einstein said. “If students have the opportunity to attend their first choice, then it’s worth losing $900.”