Recruiting Intelligence

Cathryn Andrews

Stop Dreading Data: A Brief How-To

Lately, the numbers thrown around the international student recruiting world can feel disconcerting – even frightening. We look to the Open Doors Data from IIE released this week and we see that the average number of international students studying in the U.S. this fall has declined by 7% among 500 universities, with as many as 45% of institutions reporting a drop in new international student enrollment. That figure is usually about 33% of institutions reporting a drop based on IIE year to year comparisons over the past decade.

We are all seeing more and more alarming numbers and hearing anecdotal evidence emerging as the year progresses. This, while Canada's international student numbers have grown by more than 18%. It can be easy to feel overwhelmed and discouraged here in the US, and we're sure many of our readers are feeling on-edge this week as they formulate plans and reports to their senior administrators.

Let's all take a deep breath and step back. Remember: no matter the national figures, your unique institutional numbers represent strength, resilience and potential. Your intake numbers and data on the overall performance of your marketing efforts is the foundation upon which you will build all future efforts.

Without data, you have nothing. You are operating on guesswork and flying blind.

Based on past surveys, we know that most institutions' international recruitment leaders/staff do not actually check their Google Analytics stats at all, much less at regular intervals to compare performance. We're sure that's not you, but just in case... now is the time to start!

Remind yourself and your colleagues: don't hide from the numbers because they are unfavorable, complicated or intimidating. Look for ways to make the numbers accessible, useful and easy to communicate. (That's where we come in!) 

This month, we invite you to join us for a webinar on the value of your data, Stop Dreading Data: Wielding the Power of Data to Strengthen Your International Student Recruitment Strategy on November 29, 2017 at 2:00 PM EST. This webinar will offer perspective and tools you need to harness the power of your data. We will provide simple guidelines and best practices you can begin implementing at your institution – right now.

Learn how to use data you already have to:

  • Inform your recruitment strategy
  • Evaluate relative ROI
  • Focus your budget on high value activities (which programs, which countries, which marketing channels)
  • Tailor your messaging

Read on to register to attend our complimentary webinar and explore the value of your institutional data and simple, effective ways that you can examine your numbers to increase long term performance...

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Tricks of the Trade: International Recruitment Travel

Whether you’re new to the international recruitment game or a veteran traveler, you know that extended international travel can be draining ­– physically and emotionally. This strain is doubled when you are keeping a hectic schedule and meeting many new faces every day. But then again, this process is energizing, too! That’s why you got into the industry, right? To eat all that amazing food...oh, and meet and expand the futures of young people all over the world  ;-)

So, we do encourage you to to take care of yourself as you travel the world and expand the global perspectives of tomorrow's leaders. And as you begin planning your next recruitment trips (as well as a trip to California in January to attend our annual International Student Recruitment Bootcamp!), we hope you will consider implementing some of these tips and tricks that we have compiled from our friends and colleagues over the years. This is an ever-growing list so we hope that you will add your comments and suggestions as well!

Read on to see if your travel acumen includes these five time-tested gems...

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The Global Impact of International Recruitment

Last week, we attended the NAFSA Region X conference in Princeton, NJ, and had the pleasure of meeting many new friends and reconnecting with old acquaintances. 

Perhaps the most memorable conversation for Ben and Patricia was with Dr. John Sexton, president emeritus of NYU and founder of the Catalyst Trust for Universal Education (pictured above). They had a chance to talk following his plenary addressing the value of international education and the importance of the work you do. 

Here at Intead, we often reflect on the value of all of the effort you put into this whole international education thing. This week we wanted to pause and thank each and every one of you for the incredible work you do every day to sustain a volatile industry and encourage students around the world to connect and share experiences across borders. This is, "the life to which you are called," as Dr. Sexton so aptly phrased it. And you do it with such great energy and dedication. We recognize the value of the work you do and hope that you will continue to make leaps forward in the face of today’s challenges, tomorrow’s, and the next.

We are here to say: we see everything that is happening in the world and in global education, and we echo Dr. Sexton's message of staying motivated, encouraging each other and recognizing that, "Your work is so valuable." 

Need some re-energizing? We all do once in a while. Read on to reconnect with your passion and renew your vigor…

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Exploring the Value of Dual & Joint Degree Programs

As we look forward to our next International Student Recruitment Bootcamp and consider ways to keep you informed about ways to stabilize the effects of today’s environment, we want to bring your attention to the ways that dual and joint degree programs are still picking up steam in the world of international education. For students, these degrees can seem like a bargain and well worth the effort to solidify diverse opportunities in their studies. But, how do they benefit your institution? Why is now the right time to look toward international partnerships? We are exploring these questions (and more) this week!

What are you doing to address today’s volatile global political climate? Is there more you could be doing? Are there ways to stabilize your recruitment channels? Where to turn when navigating the chaos?

In uncertain times, one key factor that can make all the difference for your international recruitment strategy is the strength of a well-informed team. At our second annual International Student Recruitment Bootcamp, we will help you navigate uncertainty in the field and increase the effectiveness of your recruitment strategy.

Our speakers have been selected for the depth and breadth of their expertise in areas including: agent networks, regional analysis, fairs, technology, partnerships and more. Join us and take advantage of their talent and the networking opportunities with your peers. Work through the specific issues facing your institution. This collaborative think-tank opportunity is rare. Many institutions are playing a guessing game – is yours?  Click here to stop guessing and register today.

Please read on for our thoughts on developing university partnerships...

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Integration vs. Inclusion & Cross-Cultural Competency on Campus

So, you have international students on campus. . . now what? We all know that the work doesn’t stop there. Your colleagues must have the tools and resources available to help students adjust both socially and culturally into campus life. 

As educators, we always strive to promote global awareness and perspective, but sometimes it can be difficult to foster this development on our own campuses. Questions that need to be asked every year—do we give students opportunities to interact across social and cultural backgrounds in all aspects of campus life? In the classroom, are there ways to foster greater inclusion with curricula and team assignments? In the end, are we producing alumni who are culturally literate and effective in a global workforce?

Achieving long-term institutional success through internationalization requires organizing on-campus resources to facilitate the types of interactions that open minds and build cross-cultural competencies. With supply chains, basic communication and daily business interactions in all industries going global, graduates entering the workforce need cross cultural perspective and skills. They need to be comfortable working with and managing a diverse set of colleagues. The universities that "get" this will produce more effective and powerful alumni.

This is a topic that has been discussed for years at NAFSA, AIEA and other higher education forums, so we wanted to highlight some of the best practical solutions that we have heard, read and discussed with higher education experts. As we take our regular summer hiatus from posting to this blog, we thought this discussion on integration and inclusion would send us off on a positive note. We hope that you will take the opportunity to join us at the NACAC conference in Boston this September or at NAFSA Regional in Princeton, New Jersey this October! We will be offering up some great new research on international student trends and the digital tools that help you reach them.

Read on for a selection of innovative tips & techniques for achieving inclusion on campus and fostering cross-cultural competency...

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Know Your Neighborhood

35,000 International Students responded to our survey in 2 DAYS! That’s engagement!

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88 Ways to Recruit
International Students

A compendium of the many ways your peers are innovating to increase and improve their international student recruiting.


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