Financial Goals & Trajectory, 2011–14
As mentioned earlier, there are several non-programmatic factors that will determine the rate of projected growth in terms of enrollment. Lack of space, limited investment capital, and current staffing limitations are just a few; it is also difficult to predict enrollment because, in essence, our programs can be seen as enrichment activities, which are subject to fluctuations in the economy and employment trends. The flexibility that we offer to our students and families through our “a la carte” model, in which students can craft their level of participation from semester to semester, is highly valued by our families, but adds another layer of unpredictability to our numbers.
With that said, we believe that the growth areas identified earlier are examples of program enhancements that are reasonable to assume and sustainable over time, based on consistent trends in our more heavily populated offerings (such as private lessons, large ensembles), current market demand (professional development, legitimate crossover genres), and deliberate cultivation efforts (brand repositioning, emphasis on “customer” experience, community engagement). In addition, our base assumption in Prep/CE is that programs and courses, at the very least, need to be self-sustaining in order to run; this conservative approach safeguards against runaway operating expenses. Our goals for overall revenue growth will be projected over a three-year period, during which time new and enhanced programs will have reached a reasonable level of maturity.
This is an exciting time of creativity and growth at NEC. Prep, CE, and the Sistema Fellows will evolve in partnership with the College, as a reflection of its shared mission and commitment to the education of the 21st-century musician. We are stewards of an exceptional legacy in Prep/CE, and will use our long and rich history to inform our choices, without allowing it to limit our vision.