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Higher Education Insights

Pandemic Concerns Driving High School Seniors to Attend College Closer to Home

Our new national survey results, which we presented at the 2020 AMA Symposium for the Marketing of Higher Education, reveal potential opportunities for colleges and universities in densely populated regions to boost enrollment. Among parents of college-bound high school seniors, 49% now prefer a college or university closer to home, a significant increase of nearly 25% from our national survey findings in the spring—33% of high school seniors agree with parents.

Many high school seniors and their parents also express serious concerns about the cost of tuition and a need for frequent updates on campus safety precautions.

Download our full report and COVID-19 marketing and communications best practices below. As COVID-19 persists, we will continue to provide actionable data, coupled with informed strategies.

Contact us to learn how we can inform a plan that makes sense for your school.


49% of parents now prefer their child attend a college closer to home

52% of prospective students are considering attending a different college due to a change in finances

70% of prospective students and parents want updates on campus safety precautions at least once a week if COVID-19 cases peak this winter

33% of prospective students now prefer to attend a college closer to home


COVID-19 and Higher Education


We also commissioned a national survey to evaluate the impact of COVID-19 on college decision-making in spring 2020. See the results from this survey here.

Our survey findings from both the spring and fall emphasize the need for higher education institutions to communicate early and often.

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