What do Thomas Crady, Cathy Cole and now Mary Kreta all have in common?

In the last four years, all three have been hired as the Vice President for Enrollment at the University of Montana.

In 2016 Dr. Thomas Crady was hired, along with receiving a $70,000 enlistment bonus that was approved by the Board of Regents. In 2018, Cathy Cole was hired for the same position, and now Mary Kreta will be assuming that position starting in September out of the University of Alaska Anchorage.

UM Director of Communications Paula Short spoke about the hire to KGVO News on Monday.

“The University of Montana has recently announced that it has hired Mary Kreta to be our new Associate Vice President for Enrollment,” said Short. “Mary will oversee admissions, financial aid and the Alumni Association and she'll be arriving on campus here a little later this fall. She's held a variety of positions at every level of the enrollment organization. So she's been a front-liner. She's been an admissions counselor. She's been a recruiter. She's been a director of admissions. She's been, of course an associate vice president as well which really gives someone a real knowledge and intimate knowledge of the recruitment process, from that first time that an individual raises their hand and expressed an interest in the University of Montana to the work that it takes to get them on campus and enrolled for classes and so on.”

Mary will oversee admissions, financial aid and the Alumni Association and she'll be arriving on campus here a little later this fall.

Enrollment at UM during this first semester under COVID 19 will be a revealing snapshot of the health of the University. Short provided the scope of those initial enrollment numbers.

“A person will be able to see our mix of in-state and out-of-state students, and our mix of graduate and undergraduate students,” she said. “That retention number is what we're very squarely focused on. That is actually a figure that indicates the retention from our first and second year. So, from a freshman last year returning as sophomores this year, but there will be quite a mix, and international students will be in there as well. So there'll be a number of ways that the data is stratified, and then of course, it all will condense down into a total headcount number and a total FTP number for the campus for this semester.”

In the last decade new freshman enrollment at the University of Montana has dropped by 40 percent.

Classes at the University of Montana started last Wednesday.

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