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The Caring Support Blog

Allied Health: How to Increase Enrollment in Universities

November 22, 2023

The COVID-19 pandemic has undoubtedly brought about a significant shift in public perception regarding the importance of healthcare workers. This global phenomenon helped in highlighting the important role that healthcare professionals play in safeguarding public health and well-being. The increased awareness and appreciation for these frontline workers can be attributed to their unwavering dedication, selflessness, and tireless efforts in combating the virus and caring for those affected.

In this article, we will explore seven enrollment strategies to increase enrollment in universities offering healthcare programs. We also discuss the need to increase enrollment in healthcare courses and the factors that affect and motivate students today to enroll in an allied health program.

Why is There a Need to Increase Enrollment in Healthcare Courses?

As the demand for healthcare professionals continues to rise, it's important for universities offering healthcare programs to increase student enrollment to help offset the staff shortages in healthcare, ultimately contributing to patients' easier access to high-quality care.

Staff Shortages in Healthcare

With the occurrence of the COVID-19 pandemic, the deeply rooted problems in the healthcare system have been more visible and striking. The need for good decision-making and long-term planning has been diluted by a problem that has occurred even in the recent years prior to the pandemic: staff shortage in the healthcare sector.

This worldwide problem led to more drastic consequences made more problematic by the pandemic, which are the decrease in the quality of care and healthcare workers' burnout. As such, increased college enrollment in healthcare programs should be emphasized, as this is one of the possible solutions to alarming staff shortages in the healthcare industry.

Patients Need Access to High-Quality Care

Patients should always have access to high-quality care, most especially the marginalized ones. However, the provision of care, including the quality and accessibility of healthcare services, to the marginalized sector is affected by the following factors:

It's then necessary to address these factors comprehensively in order to promote health equity and ensure that everyone has access to high-quality care. Efforts should focus on diversifying the healthcare workforce, improving education and professional skill development, and enhancing working conditions for all healthcare professionals.

Moreover, the increase in enrollment rates in academic programs focusing on the provision of healthcare services may also help contribute to the promotion of health equity. This is because an increase in the number of students enrolling and successfully finishing healthcare programs can help improve the quality of care, which, as mentioned, is a direct consequence of staff shortages.

Factors Affecting Enrollment in Allied Health Courses

Research about the factors that affect the student's decision to proceed with enrolling in allied health courses shows six factors for such, which include the following:

A summary of the factors affecting enrollment in allied health courses.

Personal Influence

Personal influence plays a significant role in a student's decision to enroll in a healthcare program. For many students, the encouragement and support they receive from family, friends, and mentors greatly influence their choice of career.

Universities can leverage this by establishing connections between their healthcare graduates and high school students. By arranging interactions and mentorship programs, universities can showcase the success stories of their alumni, inspiring prospective students to pursue healthcare courses.

Social Influence

Social influence, including peer pressure and societal expectations, can impact a student's decision to enroll in a university offering healthcare programs. Creating a supportive and inclusive environment that promotes healthcare professions can help attract more students.

Universities can organize awareness campaigns, seminars, and workshops to educate students and parents about the benefits and opportunities in healthcare careers. Collaborating with influential individuals and organizations within the healthcare industry can also enhance the university's reputation and attract more applicants.

Academic Preparation

Many students hesitate to enroll in healthcare programs due to concerns about their academic preparedness. To address this, universities can offer preparatory courses, bridge programs, or tutoring services to help prospective students build the necessary foundation. By providing academic support and resources, universities can instill confidence in students, encouraging them to pursue healthcare courses.


Self-efficacy, or an individual's belief in their ability to succeed, plays a vital role in enrollment decisions. Universities should focus on fostering a supportive and empowering environment that boosts students' self-efficacy. Offering mentorship programs, career counselling, and internships can provide students with real-world experiences, allowing them to develop confidence in their skills and abilities.

Aftermath of the Pandemic

As mentioned, one of the most impactful aftermaths of the COVID-19 pandemic is the increased awareness and appreciation by the public of the importance of healthcare workers.

In fact, according to a survey conducted by the EdWeek Research Center, 55% of educators have observed an increase in students' interest in healthcare careers since the beginning of the pandemic. Additionally, almost 40% of teachers have made a greater effort to encourage their students to pursue healthcare professions.

Universities must then capitalize on this renewed and increased interest by students to pursue healthcare professions to reach a wider audience in their student recruitment efforts and achieve their student enrollment goals.

On the other hand, many students have faced financial hardships, uncertainty, and disruptions to their education, also as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Universities must acknowledge these challenges and adapt their approach to attract and retain students. Flexible learning options, online resources, and financial aid packages can help ease the burden on prospective students, making enrollment in healthcare programs more accessible.

Best College Recruitment Strategies for Allied Health Programs

Here are some recruitment strategies that universities may implement to stand a better chance of increasing enrollment in the allied health programs that they offer:

A list of the best college recruitment strategies for allied health programs.

Have a Healthcare Graduate from Your School Interact with High School Students

Research suggests that prospective students in the field of allied health are more likely to consider enrolling in educational programs if they receive encouragement from practicing health professionals. These professionals serve as a highly influential source of information for students interested in pursuing careers in allied health.

Universities can allow such motivation from healthcare practitioners by organizing events that can bring meaningful interactions between healthcare practitioners, especially those who graduate from their university, and high school students.

These interactions can include panel discussions, Q&A sessions, and sharing personal experiences. This direct interaction allows high school students to ask questions, may it be general questions or specific questions about the student life during the alumni's stay in the university, gain insights into the healthcare field, and understand career prospects.

Showcasing successful alumni in the healthcare field from your university can help inspire and motivate students to pursue healthcare courses.

Provide Scholarships, Bursaries, or Financial Aids

Financial barriers often deter students from enrolling in healthcare programs. To address this, universities should provide scholarships, bursaries, or financial aid specifically for healthcare students. By easing the financial burden, universities can attract more talented students who may otherwise be unable to afford their education. Collaborating with external organizations or sponsors can also expand the financial support available to prospective students.

Invest in Digital Marketing to Boost Online Presence

In today's digital age, having a strong online presence is crucial for increasing the school's visibility on the internet, ultimately attracting potential students. Universities should invest in digital marketing strategies such as search engine optimization (SEO), social media marketing, email marketing, and content creation for their marketing needs.

For example, universities may curate blogs that implement effective keyword research and provide helpful content for students looking for higher education institutions offering allied health programs. They can also use Facebook and other social media platforms where potential students may frequent to tell a compelling story and engage with these prospective students.

Create an Overall Better User Experience in Your Website and During Enrollment

The enrollment process should be seamless, intuitive, and user-friendly. Universities need to ensure that their website provides clear and concise information about healthcare programs, admission requirements, and application procedures.

Streamlining the enrollment process, offering online application options, and providing prompt assistance to potential students can enhance the overall user experience. A positive experience during enrollment increases the likelihood of students choosing your university.

Make All Information Available and Accessible

Transparency and accessibility of information are vital to attract and retain students. Universities should provide comprehensive and up-to-date information about their healthcare programs, faculty, accreditation, and career outcomes. This information should be easily accessible on the university's website and available in multiple formats, such as brochures, videos, and virtual tours.

Create Meaningful Connections Even After Enrollment

Universities should strive to maintain meaningful connections with their enrolled students. Offering mentorship programs, alumni networks, and career counselling services can help students feel supported and connected throughout their educational journey. These activities can help universities encourage student success and create brand advocates who will recommend the institution to others.

Universities may also partner with Caring Support to further encourage the creation of meaningful connections, not just among the students in that particular school but among other students in other institutions and with prospective employers as well.

Invest in Your Campus and Its Facilities

The physical environment plays a significant role in attracting students. Universities should invest in modern facilities, state-of-the-art laboratories, and comfortable learning spaces. Creating an aesthetically pleasing campus with well-maintained infrastructure enhances the overall student experience. Additionally, offering extracurricular activities, sports facilities, and student clubs can further enrich the university experience and attract prospective students.

Help your students advance their careers by contacting us today at Caring Support.

Create Meaningful Connections with Healthcare Students at Caring Support

Increasing enrollment in universities offering healthcare programs is essential to meet the rising demand for healthcare professionals. As the world becomes increasingly digitalized, strategies and best practices to increase enrollment rates must be revamped and turned into a more personalized and streamlined experience. Meaningful connections with the universities and their potential students, even after enrollment, are also important.

At Caring Support, we find the best ways to increase engagement among higher education institutions and their students and alumni. We offer an innovative platform where universities can help their students connect with legitimate employers for internship placements and possible employment. We also provide a platform for universities to market programs they can offer students to further their careers.

Join us today, and together, let's contribute to the growth of the healthcare workforce.

About The Author
Cam Adajar
Content Writer

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