+1 (978) 744-8828 Email Us  

Recruiting Intelligence

Recruiting Saudi Students: Navigating A Challenging Climate

We’ve had Saudi Arabia on the mind lately—and not just because of the political upheaval that made big headlines this month. Saudi Arabia has long been among the top providers of international students at US universities at both the graduate and undergraduate levels, not to mention language programs. And we’re sure that recent shifts in government scholarship programs have recruitment experts (like you) wondering what future trends may hold.

Over the past two years, we’ve watched the major driver of Saudi students to study abroad, the King’s generous scholarship program take a sharp turn downward. As a result, the number of Saudi students in the US has dropped by 18% in the past year.

How institutions will make up for this loss in anticipated international student growth and revenue is a big question mark. The proactive are already at it. The lethargic are still scratching their heads and losing ground.

It's a big world with many markets. Determining which will resonate with your specific offerings is quite a task.

This week we are exploring the fundamentals of the Saudi scholarship program and its dramatic shift, in order to outline the challenges and opportunities (yes – they are still there for the right institutions) of student recruitment in Saudi Arabia.

Read on to see how and if your institution should be approaching recruitment in Saudi Arabia...

Read More

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...

Read More

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…

Read More

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...

Read More

Trending: SMS Marketing for Student Recruitment

We've been reflecting on all we learned at NACAC 2017 and everyone we met in the Exhibitor Hall. It seems that things keep circling back to a marketing strategy that appeals to us—and one that is still developing and is prompting puzzled looks from some of our clients and connections. "How do we incorporate and manage SMS texting in our student recruiting strategy?"

As an initial primer, below we review some of the challenges and rewards of SMS marketing, and we evaluate just a few of the many partners available to help your institution use emerging and trending SMS tools. Trust us, the SMS space is growing.

But this post is just the beginning. Like so many of the emerging technology tools over the past decade, we can't stop there. We'll be publishing an SMS marketing guide and review of vendors in the SMS marketing platform space. You, as our loyal blog subscribers, will be the first to get it! Bonus, right?

Before we give you some initial SMS perspective so you can start doing a great job with this important marketing option, we invite you to meet us at any of our upcoming conference presentations. We will be presenting global digital marketing insights in Princeton, NJ at NAFSA Region X, October 23-25. We will be in Weston, FL at the 9th Annual AIRC Conference, December 6-9 and in Miami Beach, FL at the ICEF Workshop, December 11-13. Reach out to us for a cup of coffee and a conversation! We always love to connect.

Read on for some help developing your SMS student marketing plan.

Read More

Calculating Return On Investment

There is so much happening here at Intead this week! We are so excited to share it with you.

First, we are dedicating this week’s blog post to our team member Jen Thayer, (you may know her as the long time manager of this blog), who will be moving on to pursue a new career opportunity at Tufts Health Plan this week. We are so proud of everything Jen has contributed to the growth of this company. She is a very dear colleague and friend, and we know that she will continue to share her positive energy and enthusiasm with the world. Best of luck Jen – we are all cheering you on! 

Next, we are excited to be presenting a webinar: “A Game of Finders Keepers: Finding and keeping the good agents” in partnership with AIRC and Angel Ahmed of GNET-Global Network, Inc. this afternoon, Wednesday September 27th at 1:00 p.m. EST. 

We all know that finding a good international recruitment agent has its challenges, and maintaining the partner relationship isn’t any easier! How do you do it well when faced with different time zones, language barriers, and the need to stand out among the other schools in an agency’s portfolio? We will address these questions and more! Click here to register.

And finally, this week we are considering return on investment in the international recruitment process – how well are you able to track ROI? Good data helps you improve your recruitment, it helps you prove to your campus leadership that your recruitment efforts are worth it, and it shows you where you can improve. 

Finding the right formula for your university can help you answer questions about where you should be focusing your recruiting budget, and where you should be backing away. Read on to see where your institution can make key improvements in measuring ROI…

Read More

NACAC, Our Latest E-Book and Today’s Enrollment Trends

Last week, Intead presented at the NACAC conference—what an exciting whirlwind! We met so many wonderful experts in the field of recruitment and were able to share our insights with many of your colleagues during our session on international recruitment, hosted with our friends Sundar Kumarasamy (Northeastern University) and Steven Bloom (ACE). We are so thrilled that so many of you made it out to our early morning session!

If you were not able to attend, as our loyal readers, we would like to extend the invitation to register to receive our latest e-book, Quality.Cost.Convenience: Beating the competition for today’s “non-traditional” students before it is released to the public. Read on to secure your copy.

Since the conference, we have been thinking a lot about today’s political environment (isn’t everyone?) and the impact it is having on recent enrollment trends. While we were in Boston, we had so many great conversations about the latest 2017 enrollment data, marketing strategies to combat dips in enrollment and what the future holds. So, this week, we are taking a brief look at research around enrollment trends in the U.S. and U.K., post-Brexit and U.S. presidential election.

Please read on for key data and industry insights (and to register for the new e-book ;-)

Read More

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...

Read More

NAFSA 2017: Presentation Slides Now Available

For those of you who were at Nafsa (that was already a week ago!), we know you are still struggling to catch up with everything now that you are back (at least we are!). We hope you are taking time to enjoy an iced drink and breathe instead of getting caught up in the usual frenzied pace (we are trying on this end ;-).

We recognize that many of you were not able to make it out to LA this year, so we want to make our insights available directly to your inbox.

This year we were pleased to present two main sessions—the first with FPP EDU Media (see link below) on our latest prospective international student research on the influence of US Executive Orders and Brexit. This research will result in our next Know Your Neighborhood report – our team is hard at work on that already. The second presentation, with Megan Prettyman from Montana State University, was on best processes for selecting and implementing a CRM System for your institution.

Read on to see key insights from the presentations and download the session slides… 

Read More

NAFSA 2017 Follow-Up...Your Next Steps Are Clear

To all the friends we saw at NAFSA, I hope your week was valuable on many levels. I found this year’s conference more inspiring than the past few. Perhaps because we all have a renewed sense of purpose to prove the value of our work and our worldview.

I shared this sentiment with a colleague the other day and she sent back, “Agreed!”

There is much to consider as we move forward with our international student recruiting strategies. One thing is clear: waiting for the dust to settle is NOT AN OPTION!

When we shared our 2017 survey results with a nice-sized crowd at NAFSA this year, there were a few uncomfortable moments. The data regarding student sentiment about the US and the UK is not good news. What is important here is to take steps to mitigate the negative sentiment that is out there.

No question, international students are annoyed with US and UK foreign policy statements (to say the least). We can only imagine what it must be like to be a young person with a global mindset watching the leaders and citizens of important countries say, in effect, “We don’t want you here!”

Thanks for dashing idealism and entrepreneurialism around the world!

By making visas harder to obtain. By making customs more annoying to navigate. By reducing access to jobs and training opportunities. When posting salacious international headlines on a regular basis. The fires of discord are being stoked.

So what do we do in times like these? Read on for a subset of tips we shared at the conference. Our slides will be available next week.

Read More