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Fredonia State College Council discusses enrollment

FREDONIA – Enrollment at Fredonia State College shows a slight decline at 5,545 students for the fall semester.
College Council members heard about enrollment, budget concerns, construction plans and other issues at the regular meeting for the fall term held Wednesday in the president’s office.
The meeting was the first for Virginia Schaefer Horvath, who has taken over as president following Dennis Hefner, who retired. The council members chose to honor Hefner with a unanimous vote to have him named a president emeritus for his many years of service.
The council discussed ideas to recruit international students and reach out to schools throughout New York State to find freshmen for future years.
Efforts include increased advertising, use of social media and personal outreach to high schools by the enrollment staff.
The current operating budget is $48.14 million, an increase of $902,300 from last year’s budget. The budget includes $13.18 million in state support and $29.16 million in college revenue, resulting in a shortfall of $5.81 million.
The shortfall at Fredonia has been addressed with $1.65 million in carry-forward funds and over-enrollment tuition revenue from past years and some salary savings from vacant positions due to retirements.
Renovation of the Williams Center is nearly complete, and it was rededicated recently. The $13 million in rehabilitation to the student center included many upgrades.
Also on target is the new $60 million science center, which may be available for student use in 2014.
A new five-year plan is currently being discussed by college planners, but it will be dependent on state budget outcomes and the New York Works Task Force, which is reviewing state-funded capital projects and future spending.