Ohio University named a new vice president for enrollment management Tuesday after years of steadily declining enrollment, which has factored into financial troubles for the institution.

Ohio University President Duane Nellis promoted Candace J. Boeninger to the position, and she will report directly to Nellis and to Executive Vice President and Provost Elizabeth Sayrs, a press release stated.

Boeninger has been an OU executive since 2010, and most recently served as interim vice provost for strategic enrollment management and served as director of undergraduate admissions since 2017, the release said.

The release said Boeninger responded admirably in her role to the global COVID-19 pandemic, including designing new approaches to scholarships, navigating disbursement of pandemic aid to students and shifting recruitment strategies to virtual formats, the release said.

“During this past year, Candace has demonstrated her ability to lead through crisis, to innovate even in the most difficult of circumstances, and to identify and call out with transparency both challenges and opportunities,” Nellis said in the release. “As we have more challenges ahead, I am confident Candace will continue to bring a spirit of innovation and opportunity to our enrollment management strategies.”

Boeninger was selected following a national search with input from a 19-member search committee of faculty, staff and students. She will move into the Vice President role, effective immediately, the release states.

“I am honored and humbled to assume this important role at OHIO,” Boeninger said in a release. “I look forward to leading the talented team in the enrollment management division and to working with the entire University community to establish a fresh vision for enrollment strategy, one that meaningfully aligns our goals, synchronizes our efforts, and builds sustainable, diverse enrollment pipelines that help OHIO deliver on our mission.”

The number of incoming freshmen at the Athens campus has steadily declined since 2016 and has further declined in fall 2020 relative to the previous year, in part due to the effects of COVID-19, The New Political reported.

The university in recent months also outlined bleak financial projections that show it expects to incur nearly $300 million in losses in the coming years, even after laying off hundreds of employees and implementing furloughs, The Athens NEWS reported.

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