CBU to consider new strategic direction to deal with demographic shift

November 29, 2013

Cape Breton University is considering its options for dealing with a projected local demographic decline that could see the current 3,200-person student body decreased to 2,500 students. CBU President David Wheeler recently told the Sydney and Area Chamber of Commerce that the university could either accept the declining numbers or develop a more aggressive marketing strategy to grow its international student body by 900, and domestic enrolments by 600. “We do believe that with smart and creative marketing and recruitment we could deliver these numbers,” Wheeler said. “It would involve significantly improving our recruitment from local high schools.” Other targets Wheeler suggested include increased retention rates, launching new programs and expanding its MBA program. “We can launch masters programs in topics like tourism, renewable energy, sustainable energy, where we have a real set of aces to play as an institution as we already have lots going on in those topics, where we know that’s part of building the industries of the future,” said Wheeler. CBU is currently seeking community feedback on these strategic considerations. Cape Breton Post