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Recruiting Intelligence

Micro-Innovations: Opportunities Speak Loudest to Those Who...

I met Jenny on a sunny July day at the corner of H and 22nd Streets in DC -- in the center of George Washington University’s campus.

Jenny’s been running this hot dog stand at this corner for 22 years.

Originally from Vietnam, she has two children currently attending the University of Virginia. With all these university ties, GWU, UVa, you’d think she works in our field of academia. And in a way, she does.

Take a closer look at that stand behind her. See the signs? Jenny is an entrepreneur and a micro-innovator. She recognizes opportunities and she goes after them. And she succeeds.

As Jenny and I talked, she shared that she sees a small boost in revenue at the end of each semester (in May and December) with her cash for books deal, in addition to the hot dog and soda sales. Her location gives her an opportunity that another hot dog vendor, at say the corner of H and 14th Streets, does not have. Her micro-innovation has proven a consistent, small incremental value to her overall operation.

It is the start of a new school year and we have so many ideas to share with you. This is no time to sit on your hands, or wring your hands. It is time to put those hands to work, get them dirty.

Read on for ideas about how thinking about micro-innovations might be just the thing that can energize your team and add up to significant growth for your recruitment funnel.

Read on...

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#EdTech for Career Prep in the Digital Age, Part 2

With your university years over, you are facing the end of your traditional education and the start of your career. You are done sitting through classes and handing in academic assignments. No more finals!

Your students have worked so hard to reach this point. And they’ve spent a fair amount of time researching their career options. Did they do all they could to maximize relevant work experience while in school? Internships? Career networking? Resume writing, LinkedIn profiling, interview practicing, alumni outreaching, job board searching, cover letter writing. This career entry thing is hard work!

Has your institution done all it could to help them pursue the career and land the job?

This is what education is all about. Transitioning the learner to then practice their craft, use what they’ve learned.

This is the second half of a two-part series on how to help students cross the bridge to employment. In Part 1, we spoke about EdTech that can help students prep for careers through mentorship and coaching, as well as platforms for virtual work experience, where students can do some of the daily tasks of their chosen career in an online micro internship. What other resources are out there to help strengthen their profile and seal the deal?

(Read on.)

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#EdTech for Career Prep in the Digital Age, Part 1

Going to College Question: Is it the journey or the destination?

Answer: It’s both, but the destination must be worth it.

After years of classes and seminars, learning and discourse, pizza and so many late nights (SO many late nights), the goal of attending university is for a student to find a job.

A university able to give confidence about the future to their prospective students will be in a stronger position than their peer institutions. Career placement stats are found on most university websites. But how about something more concrete? How can you differentiate?

In a two-part series, we are going to talk about ways that your institution can help students arrive at that destination. There are some very cool career prep resources available.

This is about career mentoring and coaching and how your students find the professionals with employer insights and connections—either from within your faculty, administration, alumni pool or through emerging tech tools (#EdTech social platforms).

The destination of the university journey is of course a job (better yet, a career). Talking to domestic and international students regularly, their focus is, of course, on their future.

“What will I do with this degree? Will it have value to me?”

Connecting to your alumni is an essential part of all of this. And yet, universities are investing so little in their global alumni as a new student recruitment resource. If you’ve not already done so, download our Global Alumni Management: State of the Field research here.

And read on for our review of Career Prep tools and resources…

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Canada: U.S. Student Recruitment Threat?

Canada is after your students!

Canadian universities are seeing a spike in international student enrollments, fueled by a political climate that has some students spooked about studying in the U.S.   According to Inside Higher Ed, international enrollments rose 10.7% for Canadian institutions from 2016-2017, a period during which the U.S. saw a 7% decline.

Some students enrolling in Canadian institutions hail from countries that American institutions have long relied upon. For instance, the Hindustan Times reported that the number of Indian students enrolled in Canadian institutions topped 100,000 for the first time in 2016.

But for American universities, the threat is actually two-fold. Some of Canada’s international students are America’s domestic students—so that means that your Canadian competitors may be siphoning both your domestic and international enrollments. Not looking so polite now, huh?

Read on to get the recruiting perspective you need.

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LinkedIn Tracks Your International Alumni

International alumni are critically important to good recruitment and fundraising efforts: heck, we researched and co-wrote a whole report on it!

In the fall of 2017, Intead and Academic Assembly, Inc., surveyed over 100 professionals working at U.S. institutions of higher education about their international alumni management practices. When we asked what three factors they considered their biggest hurdles to developing a stronger program, 35% included “we don’t track international alumni” on their list.

Yikes!

Needless to say, your CRM system (you have one, right?) can track your alumni, both international and domestic. But if you are among the 35% whose institution just doesn’t track, we have one suggestion for how you can still connect with your far-flung alums. It’s right at your fingertips: LinkedIn.

If you are at AIEA in DC next week, come learn from us at our two sessions:

  • Tues. 2/20 at 7:45 am -- Ben will join MJ Miller, Senior VP North American Higher Ed at Kaplan International, to serve up a dose of international student research and insights poured right into your morning coffee. Breakfast will be served! Now we've got you, right? 
  • Wed. 2/21 at 11 am -- Ben will interview Lakshmi Iyer, Executive Director & Head of Education at Sannam S4 and and Jon Stauff, Vice Provost for Global Educationat Monmouth University about creating successful partnerships with Indian Universities.

Read on to learn how Linkedin is your secret (free) weapon as you find and manage your global alumni...

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Your Global Alumni as International Student Recruiters

Student perceptions ARE their reality.

We are all facing growing concern about the flow of Indian students (and other international students) to the US as a study destination. We are hearing their concerns about US visa and H-1B processes. While the new US administration has not made any real policy changes for Indian students, perceptions have changed. Many Indian students are perceiving that a U.S. education is less accessible and the door to US job opportunities is closing.

Are we up to the task of changing these perceptions? Are we able to reassure Indian, and other international students, that the educations US institutions provide continue to represent tremendous value and advanced career opportunities?

Ironically, one of the most powerful assets your institution has is also often one of the most under-utilized. As an institution, you already have a built-in network of loyal advocates who are, more than likely, already doing your promotional work for you. They are willing, eager and well positioned to talk about the value of your institution: your global alumni network.

The question is: have you made effective use of this key advantage?

We’ll be talking about using alumni and other international student recruiting tactics at NAFSA in LA next month. We hope you’ll take a moment to schedule a meeting with us if you are attending, too. Let us share our latest jaw-dropping research with you.

Read on for a set of essential tips and techniques for making effective use of your alumni network to recruit international students, around the country and around the world.

(Pro Tip: share this post with your Alumni Office.)

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LinkedIn University Finder: Advantage For Lesser Known Schools

In last week's post, we gave you an international student's user perspective of LinkedIn’s University Finder tool (thank you for all the positive feedback by the way). 

For those of you wanting more digital marketing perspective... Join us in Miami at the ICEF pre-conference Global Marketing Seminar for Education Institutions. We hope to see you there.

This week, we check back in with our international marine engineer, Steven, to see what is driving his decisions about graduate study. Steven is looking for international and US universities with a master’s program in engineering and project management. His LinkedIn search yielded an intriguing list of institutions. In this post, we share Steven’s thoughts on the functionality of the tool and the effectiveness of the universities’ LinkedIn pages that he visited.

Bottom Line: International students seeking to study abroad have far too many choices and need tools like LinkedIn to narrow the field and focus their decision making. Your institution needs to be represented well here to take advantage of the free marketing LinkedIn is providing. Little known universities stand to gain the most.

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How to use LinkedIn in college marketing and recruitment?

LinkedIn dominates online professional relationship building. LinkedIn creates and retains connections, provides transparency into professional backgrounds and accomplishments.  Professional recruiting is heavily influenced by LinkedIn.  An now LinkedIn is starting to build a direct connection to universities, alumni and even university rankings.  What does that mean for your activities as university administrators, admission officers and alumni offices?

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Average is Over: Successful International Student Enrollment Requires an Increased Energy Level

During the winter break, I found more time to read lots of books and magazines. Let me share one headline that stuck with me.  "Average is Over." It's the title of economist Tyler Cowen's book about the future of our economy. But beyond the title of this book, this theme was prevalent in many of the books and articles I read. Competition is intensifying across all product and service categories, and product cycles are decreasing. Higher education is no exception to that increased competitive environment.  And you, the admissions and marketing departments, stand at the forefront of that competition for qualified and motivated students.  

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The International Admissions Officer Bookshelf - Summer 2013

We are avid readers of all types of materials so we decided to share with our readers our staff bookshelves. Here is our first installment.  Please feel free to send us recommendations of books you found helpful and would suggest to your colleagues. 

 
Cross-cultural Understanding           

Susan Cain's book "Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking" may seem an unusual choice for your international admission officer bookshelf. This is a helpful book for anybody who is not an introvert and who wants to understand his or her environment and improve working relationships. In the international arena, the books offers key insights into introvert and extrovert behaviors within different cultures, also called high context or low context cultures.   

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