Scannell & Kurz Enrollment Management Blog

While Scannell & Kurz continues to provide the expert consulting and high level of service by which we define ourselves, as a division of Ruffalo Noel Levitz we also offer the benefits of our collaboration with a larger team of talented consultants.

Part of that collaboration involves our enrollment blog. Each week on this site, we have posted relevant research, insights, and recommendations to help you make the most of your strategies. We will now post to the Ruffalo Noel Levitz blog along with a good number of our colleagues—increasing the frequency and diversity of posts you’ll find on all manner of topics.

The Ruffalo Noel Levitz blog covers the key topics we have addressed: enrollment management, student retention, student recruitment, financial aid, and marketing. We are looking forward to not only continuing to share our insights with you, but to connect you with the additional strategies and recommendations of our new colleagues.

There’s also an option to subscribe for synopses of recent blog posts. You will continue to find, and be able to search, our archived blog posts here on this site.

We invite you to explore this resource—and to let us know if you’re looking for specific advice.

May 2012

Capturing Your Stories - Monday Musings
Although our blogs clearly show that we are biased in favor of data, we also know how critical stories are to marketing, recruiting, retention, and alumni relations. Yet most institutions aren’t very deliberate about capturing and sharing fresh stories. As you prepare for summer training for recruiters and orientation leaders, here are some strategies we have seen work for collecting compelling anecdotes: Run a contest. Saint Bonaventure recently asked incoming students to submit a short video about why they chose SBU. Not only was it a way to keep new students engaged, but now they have posted the top contenders on YouTube. You could do the same thing with current students, with faculty, with alumni, etc. Stay in touch with current students…Read more

Organizational Effectiveness - Monday Musings
When institutions create silos, customer service suffers. Stated another way, when colleges and universities organize and create policies and practices from an internal point of view (e.g., administrative convenience, job security, etc.) versus a vision of how the institution looks from the outside, navigation can be a nightmare, service gaps are routine, and redundancies are rampant. Let me cite two examples of administrative dysfunctionality, one that crosses divisional boundaries and one that exists within an administrative unit. First, registration policies that do not take into account the unique need for timely course availability for newly enrolled transfer students can add considerably to time to degree. At a minimum, the admissions…Read more

Auto-packaging vs. Predictive Modeling: A Tale of Two Approaches - Monday Musings
Financial aid offices experience very tangible benefits from automated award packaging. Staff members spend less time manually calculating and entering award amounts and have more time to spend counseling students. Improving students’ (and parents’) understanding of their financial aid packages improves their ability to make informed decisions about college. There is also the benefit to the financial aid operation of reducing the errors that inevitably result from manual processes. These are significant tactical improvements in a critical enrollment function. In addition, many institutions use auto-packaging as a test exercise to estimate the impact of changes in awarding policies on the aid budget, or to understand potential losses in…Read more

Elastic or Inelastic, That is the Question - Monday Musings
If you work in the Admissions or Financial Aid office of your institution you’ve probably heard a hundred different students say, “If you could just find a way to give me a couple thousand extra dollars in scholarships, then I’d enroll.” Or perhaps something like this, “University X is offering me $16,000 in grants and you’re only offering me $15,000? Isn’t there anything you can do to match their offer?” Students and their families have become savvy consumers. Some are facing financial hardships, others are just looking to get the best deal possible, and most aren’t afraid to ask for more money. The big questions for college administrators are, “Should we offer these students a little more money?” “Will it increase our…Read more