The sexual abuse scandal involving doctor Larry Nassar is adversely affecting the enrollment of new students at Michigan State University. The school is seeing a decline in undergraduate applications that fell by 3,000 for the fall of 2018, according to an ESPN report.
The enrollment report released by the university in October has revealed that the new applications fell by 3.6 percent in 2017 and by 8.3 percent in 2018. Before 2017, the university had seen a steady increase in new enrollments over a period of seven years.
“As a parent … you look at the culture of a school and you determine, ‘How comfortable will I feel with my son or daughter at this institution?’ … It’s possible that certainly student-athletes, particularly women, might not feel particularly supported in light of what’s happened at Michigan State,” David Hawkins, executive director for educational content and policy with the National Association for College Admission Counseling, told ESPN.
“Michigan State has had a very difficult time dealing with this issue.”
In May, the university agreed to settle the lawsuit by paying $500 million to 332 victims of sexual abuse by Nassar, who was sentenced to 40-175 years in prison after he was found guilty of three child pornography charges and 10 sexual assault charges.
Last month, former university President Lou Anna Simon was charged on two misdemeanor and two felony counts of lying to police over the way the school handled the complaint against Nassar.