The enrollment cliff has everyone a little on edge. People are burned out and frustrated. Leadership is looking for bigger gains in shorter time frames. And traditional students just aren’t showing up in ways they traditionally have.
It’s so clear that higher ed is at an inflection point. Thank the pandemic. Thank technology. The economy and unpredictable job market. The changing student landscape. What you need now more than anything is support. Ideally in the form of a soothsayer to tell you where and how to invest your time, energy, and resources. If only.
Our advice: take a deep breath and read this post.
While soothsayer we may not be, we do have some perspective on what lies ahead. And our record for predicting changes in the market has proven accurate for more than a decade. Long before the recommendations below became standard practice in enrollment management (they all sound so obvious now, right?), we advised colleagues to:
We know, it’s all old hat now. But a decade ago, very new to international enrollment management teams.
Today we are facing some pretty significant headwinds. Post-pandemic changes to how students evaluate universities. Growing financial pressures facing families. Increasing importance of careers and the ROI of your degrees. Heightened interest in certificates and shorter paths to career growth. Political divisiveness harkening back to the US civil unrest of the 1960s (or 1860s?). Are you factoring social justice including climate activism into your marketing plans?
These factors are all part of the student and parent mindset as they evaluate investments in university level education. The pool of nontraditional students is much larger and more diverse than the shrinking traditional student pool. And yet, the international student pool is one that is growing and projected to grow dramatically in the coming years.
If you’re ignoring any of these market segments, we strongly advise you don’t. Our analysis of and predictions about what influences student decision making, the tools and processes you need in place to be both efficient and effective, this counsel has been spot on for a very long time (our blog records act as our receipts).
You’re in the right place. Read on to be sure you are able to anticipate what is next and what to do about it.Read More