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College of Business Administration sees increase in overall signed majors since 2014

Since fall 2012, the College of Business Administration has seen a steady increase in enrollment across the majority of the 17 majors offered by the college.

A notable factor in the gradual rise of students signing business majors are female students who are choosing business courses.

Daniel Vetter, associate dean of the College of Business Administration, attributes the uptick in female enrollment is a sign of younger people migrating toward the field of business.

“Generally, it’s a better job market,” he said. “More women, like males, are looking for better opportunities. Maybe businesses are more open to women than they were before.”

Most popular majors overall in the College of Business Administration for fall 2016:

  1. Marketing, 422 signed majors
  2. Accounting, 355 signed majors
  3. Logistics management, 315 signed majors
  4. Finance, 224 signed majors
  5. Entrepreneurship, 208 signed majors

Waterford junior Diyana Dimitrova is one of the 422 students signed as a marketing major and only one of 148 women. An executive board member of the American Marketing Association, Dimitrova said she has experienced the opportunity to appreciate and enjoy her field of choice presented by the college.

“We get to meet and talk with experts and speakers from all over the place,” she said. “The people I’ve met through the program have become like a second family.”

Though men still outnumber women in the college, by 1,603 to 870, enrollment for women overall has seen a steady increase of 19 percent.

Of CBA’s most popular majors accounting, logistics and entrepreneurship have all seen the percentage of women enrolled increase over the past five years.

The college’s dean, Charles Crespy, said he looks at enrollment statistics as indicators of where CBA can go next, rather than looking for opportunities to maintain any sort of status quo for enrollment.

“We’re not necessarily interested in growing majors for the sake of growing majors,” he said. “We try to stay in front of the changes in technology, and offer programs that are at the state-of-the-art. Some of the programs we offer that we’re excited about may have been inconsequential 10 or 15 years ago.”

The goal of actively pushing the boundaries of what options are available for students has been a driving force behind Crespy’s decisions, he said.

“Some universities look at government data to see where good jobs are,” he said. “Experience has shown us when you look at existing data to see where jobs are today, those jobs aren’t often around tomorrow. That’s why we have a lot of faculty near the state-of-the-art, so we can stay in touch with these advancements, and try to build programs around those things.”

One of the few majors offered by the college that has seen a noticeable drop in signed students over the past five years has been the Hospitality Services Concentration. Since fall 2012, the number of students enrolled in the Hospitality Services Concentration has dropped from 103 to 57 as of fall 2016 — a 55 percent decline.

Crespy attributes the decrease in enrollment to the college’s offering of more specialized courses.

“When the College of Education and Human Services expanded the event management major, a lot of students that were interested saw it as a viable opportunity to pursue sports-related or hospitality-related activities that didn’t involve what hospitality generally involves, which property-management related issues,” he said.

Despite one major being more popular over another, Crespy believes each degree course should be taught with the same rigor.

Dimitrova said she hasn’t felt like the college gives special treatment to the marketing major.

“I feel like (the college) gives attention to every major,” she said. “I don’t think they treat majors besides marketing like they’re any different or less important.”