Colleges admit students in April, but sometimes those students drop out and don’t enroll as freshmen in August-September. There could be financial or other reasons for why the students decide not to attend the collegea. College admissions have called this “summer melt.”
“Summer meltdown” was cited in print in July 1984. “‘Summer melt,’ the shrinkage in the number of students who have paid the required deposit of $100 or $200 to reserve a place in the freshman class” was cited in print in September 1984.
16 July 1984, Syracuse (NY) Herald-Journal, “Colleges ponder problem of reneging freshmen” by Jay P. Goldman, pg. B-5, col. 2:
But college officials are concerned about this trend—termed by one official the “summer meltdown”—because late decisions by students make their planning for incoming freshmen more uncertain.
9 September 1984, Boston (MA) Globe, “Colleges have a freshman glut; Directors puzzled by influx during decrease of high school graduates” by Nina McCain, pg. 1:
They also overestimated the effect of “summer melt,” the shrinkage in the number of students who have paid the required deposit of $100 or $200 to reserve a place in the freshman class.
The Big Campus Come-On In the world of viewbooks and videos, all campuses are lush, all coeds comely. Here’s how colleges sell themselves.
By DENISE M.TOPOLNICKI Reporter associate: Rhonda Johnson
September 10, 1990
Admissions officers sweat during the so-called summer melt, the period between March and April when acceptance letters are mailed and registration fees are collected, usually in August.
14 June 2003, Boston (MA) Globe. “Colleges try to stem loss of student admissions” by Marcella Bombardieri, pg. A1:
For years, the evaporation of future freshmen has been a fact of life for college administrators—it even has a nickname, the “summer melt.”
Inside Higher Ed
The Other ‘Summer Melt’ in Admissions
April 4, 2011
By Scott Jaschik
“Summer melt”—referring to those students who commit to enroll at a given college but then don’t do so—has been the subject of much discussion in recent years. Articles have focused on the challenges that colleges face when students put down multiple deposits (which they aren’t supposed to do), throwing off projections of “yield,” the percentage of accepted applicants who actually enroll. Students and their families have been encouraged to play off of colleges’ fears of too much summer melt to ask for more financial aid (frequently of the sort that is not based on financial need).
U.S. News & World Report
5 Ways Summer Melt May Mean Financial Aid for You
Students who back out of their college commitments leave money on the table for their peers.
By Brian Burnsed
July 20, 2011
Did you get less federal financial aid than you’d hoped, or miss out on that merit-based scholarship you were sure you’d receive? Fear not: It’s likely that there is still money on the table for you—even in midsummer—if you know when and how to look, financial aid officials say.
Every year, prospective students who have committed to a school back out in the 11th hour, a trend commonly known as summer melt. While schools try their best to account for potential summer melt, some financial aid set aside for those students returns to the schools’ coffers
U.S. Department of Education—Homeroom blog
Posted on July 12, 2013 by Alejandra Ceja
It’s summer time! Across the nation thousands of recent high school graduates are enjoying their last summer before their first college semester. They are submitting deposits, selecting courses, packing, and anxiously awaiting their first day. However, a large portion of students from low-income communities will have a very different summer experience. Despite being college eligible and in some cases even enrolled, these students will not attend in the fall and will instead “melt” away during the summer.
This is called “summer melt”. Nationally about 10 to 20 percent of college eligible students melt away, most of which are low-income minority students planning to enroll in community college.