4/1/ UPCEA CONFERENCE Applications for MSU Outreach. Ross, Jaime M

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1 4/1/ UPCEA CONFERENCE Applications for MSU Outreach Ross, Jaime M

2 2014 UPCEA CONFERENCE Applications for MSU Outreach Measuring Career Success of Adult Learners Ensuring and measuring the career success of professional students is challenging- but critical to our missions. Robust conversation will focus on ways in which attendees and presenters provide students with career advice and professional development skills, foster networks and ongoing relationships with employers, and determine and implement metrics to measure learning outcomes and job outcomes. Workshops organized for specific programs which allow students the opportunity to ask questions of and meet those in the field with the same degree. (Friday night events with snacks & refreshments). Specialized career coaching based out of the CE/Outreach departments geared towards adult learners (improves career preparedness and brand value). Career planning services set up for online learners as well- career coaches make a concerted effort to reach out to online students to help with their resume building and preparing for interviews. George Washington University implemented online career chats where they recorded career planning workshops and then sent them to their online students for viewing and discussion. GW also uses Interview Stream - the student utilizes a web cam and answers interview questions asked of them by a virtual search committee member. Their video is recorded and automatically appears in the career resource specialist s queue to review and discuss with the student. GW has also incorporated career services into the curriculum by including an assignment in intro level courses (within the departments) which asks them to write about their career goals and how their current program fits within those goals (required but not graded). Syracuse University offers a program called CuseConnect which is a LinkedIn group open only to SU students and alumni. It offers students the opportunity to gain insights from alumni in the career fields that the student is interested in. A good way to network, gather information about employment, job functions, and career paths. Syracuse also offers a Career Crash Course to help students build their resume, learn about branding themselves, interviewing, and how to manage finances. Applications for Outreach: Build a stronger partnership with the Career center See if alums would be interested in serving as mentors for our adult students who are pursuing degrees in similar fields 1

3 Offer workshops through Adult Student Services that allow our adult/distance learners the opportunity to meet with career center staff and review resumes, have mock interviews, etc. Measuring Adult Student Gains and Satisfaction after Earning an Undergraduate Degree or Through Continuing Education UPCEA s Center for Research and Consulting (CRC), in partnership with Hobson s, is interested in measuring adult student gains and satisfaction after earning a bachelor s or associate s degree, or undergraduate credit certificate from a U.S. college or university. The objective of the research is to measure how the undergraduate degree or certificate has impacted adult learners careers and personal lives. The data represents only degree completers. Institutions must better communicate the value of a degree, and put it in terms of long-term financial and psychological return. Financially, help potential students identify the break-even point and measure the impact of unemployment/job security in terms of the investment in the degree or certificate. As an option, communicate the benefits of a certificate in terms of a short-term substitute or long-term career differentiator. To address time and work conflicts, continue to expand the hybrid and online portfolio as well as summer and weekend offerings. Programs should also be market-driven. Invest into more bandwidth in transferring credits, conducting portfolio reviews and assessing credit for life opportunities. Revisit the student support, advising and marketing functions as well as technology and CRM in terms of how to anticipate the needs of adults. Identify areas of improvement and innovative practices to direct the right student into a program. Applications for Outreach: Gauge market demand for online courses/programs- explore adding an element to our web page that allows potential students the opportunity to share what online degree programs there is interest in. Better communicate the value of a Bachelor s degree to prospective and current students by outlining current market conditions and payoff associated with advanced degrees. Explore the option of competency based credits or credit for life opportunities- this could translate into a unique marketing niche and increased enrollment in non-traditional students. Get a better handle on how adult students are communicated with at the university from first point of contact through admissions and registration- would investing in a CRM software program be beneficial at MSU (educause, Hobson s)? 2

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8 Interactive Marketing Preferences of Adult Learners- New Research With seemingly endless educational choices and a proliferating set of interactive communication channels and devices, how do you effectively reach and communicate with students? Utilizing data from large scale research, participants will discover students interactive preferences and how to use these data to craft specific ways to improve enrollment marketing efforts. The top three communication preferences as selected by prospective students were: search engine, e- mail messages, and direct mail The top three communication preferences for engagement were: search engine, messages, and direct mail The top three pieces of information that adults value most when researching education options were: costs, academic information, and career outlook for the programs that they are interested in The top three event preferences were: an online information session (e.g. webinar), a sample online lecture (previously recorded), an online archived information session (e.g. previously recorded webinar) Adults participate in these three online activities most frequently: , search engines, and text messaging Marketers recommend that the majority of marketing investments should be put into search engine marketing and search engine optimization (70% of budget) The importance of developing and maintaining a mobile-friendly website was emphasized (responsive design) Students want to test-drive potential institutions Be responsive and follow up- adults prefer channels that they can control Applications for Outreach: Need to review and get a handle on what we re doing in terms of search engine optimization Review our website to make sure that we are highlighting and clarifying costs, academic information and career outlooks Work on developing ways for prospective students to test us out by offering webinars, creating a YouTube channel with recorded FAQ s about online education at MSU, etc. Revisit our communication plan and block out time for advisors to commit to contacting and nurturing relationships with prospective students 7

9 Post-Traditional Student Success: How and What, Rather than Whether to Measure Calls for greater accountability from the policymaking and governance community have combined with the changing demographic and goal profile of today s learners to make documentation of student academic success a priority. Yet, the question isn t whether to develop a program of measuring the success of our learners; rather it s what and how to measure recent research as well as case studies involving examples of metrics and their possible uses with be offered. Look at stop-out students and determine what made them stop attending classes Look at students who withdraw- determine why they withdrew Be in touch regarding students academic progress- reach out at midterms if they are struggling Offer co-curricular activities for students to engage in that center around their programs or interests Put analytics toward focusing on what intervention will impact student success not on what some students are failing and/or not doing well 25% of drops come from finances and academics, 75% come from life events interrupting school Use professionals to assess students stories concerning why/how they decided to come back to school and leverage the expertise of the student support professionals Research noted the need for immediate and aggressive intervention on the part of career services which will assist in the retention and degree completion of adult learners Applications for Outreach: Build data blocks and reporting structures that will allow us to query this information and contact students that have withdrawn, are enrolled but not registered, etc. Establish a means to identify what our student s needs are, what we re providing that they find useful and what we re not that they need or want Intervene early when financial aid issues arrive- adult student services staff should be extensively trained on financial aid basics and FAQ s Engage more with career services and initiate conversations with adult students and their office 8

10 Shining Light into Enrollment Black Holes Black holes of data- where communications often break down, inquiries languish, and enrollment suffers, can affect enrollment growth, effectiveness of advertising expenditures, and inquiry management. Join us to discuss creative internal partnerships and strategies designed to close those information gaps and explore what is and isn t working at your institutions to manage lead generation and increase applications and enrollments. Breakdowns occur due to: Multiple information sources Communications breakdown Tracking methods vary from unit to unit Little or no conversion data Can t measure effectiveness of communications Enrollment role confusion Applications for Outreach: Invite representatives from other units to our staff meetings to introduce themselves and share what they do as well as what we do It is important to follow up with the student after sending them to the department to make sure that they are being assisted in the best way possible Communication plans should be defined and laid out clearly so units know what department is responsible for contacting, tracking, and following up with students Communicate with departmental advisors regarding what services we offer to adult students. Reaching out may assist departmental advisors when they are overloaded thereby increasing the likelihood of student retention/satisfaction 9

11 An example of a Mizzou online partnership with one of their online programs: Mizzou Online/Sinclair School of Nursing Distance Program Marketing Pilot Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) This agreement is made between the Sinclair School of Nursing (hereinafter called SSoN) and Mizzou Online to provide program-specific marketing for SSoN's distance programs for a two-year period. The purpose of the pilot is to help SSoN achieve its distance program growth goals and collect data that will allow us to measure the success of recruitment tactics and advertising expenditures. Total marketing expenditures not to exceed: $XX,XXX/annually SSoN marketing expenditures not to exceed per year: $XXXXX (60%) to be deducted from revenue share in the first semester of the agreement Mizzou Online marketing expenditures not to exceed per year: $XX,XXX (40%) SSoN and Mizzou Online will collaboratively establish inquiry, application and conversion rate goals based on historical data from IntelliWorks, ApplyYourself, myzou, and SSoN records. To achieve these goals, both parties must assume certain operational responsibilities. SSoNwill: Provide specific enrollment goals for its distance programs. Approve content of advertisements. Provide content for automated messages used for inquiry response. Designate representative(s) responsible for inquiry follow-up, including: o Input inquiry data into Mizzou Online web-based form o Make contact with prospects via or phone as specified in the Inquiry Outreach Plan o Inform Mizzou Online of outbound contact efforts for inquiries Mizzou Online will: In consultation with the SSoN, manage the recruitment marketing campaign, including o Finalize advertising and sponsorship plans. o Select, negotiate and purchase advertising space. o Draft and design advertisements and sponsorship text Train and support designated SSoN representatives(s) on inquiry follow-up. Provide samples of outbound s to pre-applicants Evaluate effectiveness of advertising and sponsorship efforts. Provide quarterly and annual reports on advertisements, results and prospects. Following a maximum of two years of program specific marketing funding from Mizzou Online, the academic unit assumes full responsibility for costs associated continued program specific marketing. Mizzou Online will continue to provide general marketing on behalf of all MU's distance programs. Term of MOU It is mutually understood that this agreement shall become effective October 21,2013 and remain in effect until October 21,2015, and shall be reviewed on an annual basis. This agreement may be modified at any time by mutual written consent of both parties. 10

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