STATE WIDE - Public Universities in Maine have seen a drop in enrollment over the past 5 years, but now they are trying to turn it around.
For Jason Myers, moving from Connecticut to the Pine Tree State to attend the University of Maine was an easy decision, "Part of it was just a sense of welcoming". Jason is just one of many out of state students attending a Maine college. They're as plentiful and as heavily recruited as ever.
"We recently went to Chicago and recruited there, had a great visit there at a national college fair," says, Debra Daeris with University of Southern Maine. The University of Maine has also been traveling, "Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Vermont, and even New York," says Jimmy Jung of UMaine.
There is a reason for all of this out of state recruiting. Jung says UMaine has seen a drop in enrollment between 2008 and 2012, nearly 8 percent. The University of Southern Maine has also seen a drop in enrollment. Schools believe part of the problem is that traditional high school aged students are decreasing in numbers.
Students on UMaine Orono can tell there are more students around the country attending school at the flagship campus. "I see California license plates, I see Ohio, everything, and I've also met a lot of people who are from across the country," says Sophomore Jordan Endre. "Honestly, I think they see a community here and I think its a place that feels like home," says Senior William Smith.
For UMaine Orono, the new method of recruitment is working. "In 2013 and 2014, we have growth in both our instate and out of state populations," says Jung.
At the University of Southern Maine, prospective students can also expect to see more scholarship money come their way. "They automatically get these scholarships in their acceptance letter if they qualify," says Daeris.