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Student Recruitment & Information

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Copy and Share Everything
CURRENTS Article A time portal that allows prospective students to glimpse their future at the U.K.'s University of Huddersfield drives this entertaining yet informative five-minute video; the University of Chicago's Short List email newsletter offers one-stop shopping for news, job listings, events, and stories ranging from the enlightening to the offbeat; and Towson's Presidential Ambassadors expanded their mission of educating peers about the importance of philanthropy by creating the university's first student-giving campaign.

Copy and Share Everything
CURRENTS Article Lawrence University aims to entice potential applicants is with a 10-page square mailer, which gives students a taste of life at the Wisconsin institution as well as an idea of what life might look like after graduation; a charming and authoritative third-grader leads "Today's Lesson: The Pennfield Fund," a five-minute video set up as a class about the importance of the Rhode Island independent school's annual fund; and during Alumni Weekend 2015, Imperial College London reveled in its graduates' proclivity for pranks.

Reaching Prospective Students
CURRENTS Article Reaching potential students is tough in this digital age. How can your institution stand out? Be student-centric, not school-centric. "Every time you put students at the center of a strategy, you have up to a 50 percent higher response rate," says Emily Bauer, managing director of program marketing for Royall & Company, which recently conducted a study on enrollment engagement practices. Here are three ways to engage your next potential class.

Copy and Share Everything
CURRENTS Article Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary helps prospective students envision their place at the Kentucky institution; the University of Melbourne's advancement staff members create short, informal messages to prompt alumni recipients to update their contact information; and Miami University's Snapchat newsletter releases a Snapchat story filled with images of event fliers and details for activities happening on the Ohio campus each day.

Grand Gold Rush
CURRENTS Article Inspired design, storytelling, ingenuity, humor, and brevity were hallmarks of this year's CASE Circle of Excellence Awards Grand Gold winners, the highest prize bestowed by the program. Whether attracting international applicants with an ambitious contest, sharing advice through campus fun facts and pride points, demonstrating that campus quirks will garner attention and gifts, or redesigning a magazine in a way that makes class notes inviting and (gasp!) readable, institutions relied on research, knowledge, and creative skill to push boundaries and deliver inspired work—much of it produced in-house.

Copy And Share Everything
CURRENTS Article The messaging behind the "Because This Is Auburn" campaign's print fundraising materials moved donors' hearts and minds enough to help the Alabama institution reach its $1 billion goal one year early. And: In October 2015, University of Sydney faculty members took to different bars to simultaneously discuss provocative topics to attract the interest of prospective graduate students and generate media attention.

6 Mantras of Content Strategy
Article,  BriefCASE Article Content strategy, at its core, centers around one key concept: don't be a car just like the other cars, says a strategy expert.

Using Data to Maximize Marketing Budgets
Article,  Community College News Article Like many community colleges, Tallahassee Community College was looking to grow its enrollment, but instead of simply spending more on advertising and marketing, the college took a step back—and decided to take a different approach to its marketing strategy.

Embracing Disruption
CURRENTS Article During the Great Recession, Bill Campbell became fascinated with marketing in fields experiencing disruption. He left his position as a vice president and brand strategy director at an agency to work for a university—in a higher education marketplace that has become profoundly destabilized. Crazy? No. Savvy marketing professionals should view obstacles as opportunities. They offer the potential to move in different directions as well as the prospect of leading an important conversation about marketing's place in higher education and its effect on the future viability of our institutions.

A Star Graduates
CURRENTS Article Alyssa Levenberg isn't just a student at the State University of New York at Oswego: She's a video star. As the producer, editor, and host of the popular campus series Alyssa Explains It All, this video blogger—or vlogger—chats about navigating college life, covering topics such as interacting with roommates and professors to coping with dining hall food and stress. Her 50-plus episodes, primarily geared toward prospective and incoming students, have racked up more than 40,000 views on YouTube alone. CURRENTS spoke with Levenberg, who will graduate in May 2016, and Tim Nekritz, associate director of communications and marketing and director of digital communications at SUNY Oswego. They talked about what they've learned from producing the series—and how it all started in 2012 with a tweet from the then-freshman offering to make videos.

Why—Even in a Digital World—Campus Visits Matter
Article,  BriefCASE Article Today, prospective students can instantly learn volumes about—and make key enrollment decisions based on—your institution's online presence. Consider this: a third of students surveyed for the 2016 "The Digital Search for Education" study reported that they follow prospective schools on social media. Another third reported that bad website navigation can turn them off to an institution entirely.

Marketing Your Institution Abroad—Where to Start
Article,  BriefCASE Article As the global higher education market expands, international institutions must make strategic decisions to be competitive, says a higher education marketing specialist.

2015 Circle of Excellence Grand Gold Winners
CURRENTS Article Emotion and connection were major themes among 2015's CASE Circle of Excellence Awards Grand Gold winners. Whether communicating about a deadly virus, cultivating entrepreneurs, engaging alumni with advanced degrees, or sharing the inspiring story of a college student whose life was cut short by illness, institutions dug deeply into their creative toolboxes-though not necessarily into their budgets. They also had fun courting prospective students and welcoming new admits to the family.

Blazing a New Trail in Communications and Marketing
Article,  Community College News Article Doug Wotherspoon was looking into the future…and he didn’t like what he was seeing.

Running the Place
CURRENTS Article Since September 2014, the University of Oregon has offered a 3.7-mile running tour that gives prospective students a runner's perspective of campus and the city of Eugene. The tour concludes with a victory lap around OU's Hayward Field, site of the U.S. Olympic Track and Field Trials.

Show Your Worth
CURRENTS Article With growing concerns over student debt, rising tuition, and the perceived high costs of higher education, prospective students and their families are clamoring for evidence. It's a reality that's forcing institutions, long accustomed to touting their academic strengths, to emphasize career preparation, job placement, value, and return on investment.

Adopt Unique Strategy for International Student Recruitment
Article,  BriefCASE Article An institution’s recruitment marketing strategy for students outside of its home country should differ from its strategy for domestic students, says an institutional marketer.

International Student Recruitment Marketing Strategies
Podcast The University of Liverpool's Claire Brown discusses how marketing professionals should determine what areas of the world to target for potential students.

Student Recruitment Packages
Sample Collection The Library maintains this collection of student recruitment samples for all members. The collection includes recruitment viewbooks, videos, publications packages, brochures and assorted other materials.

Student Recruitment Samples
Sample Collection The Library maintains this collection of student recruitment materials including viewbooks, videos, publications packages, brochures and assorted other materials. The pages linked below are arranged by sample type, then alphabetically by institution.

Student Recruitment
Good Question Do you have resources about student recruitment communications and marketing tactics? Samples from other institutions would also be helpful.

What Works? Communications Practice to Aid Student Retention and Success
White Paper 22 UK higher education institutions studied alternative approaches to improving student retention and success between 2008 and 2011. One key finding is that fostering a strong sense of belonging early in college life is essential to retaining students. This white paper details how communication strategies can play a vital role in creating a sense of belonging for students and thereby boost student retention and success.

Does your marketing deliver?
CURRENTS Article Rob Moore has worked in higher education marketing for three decades, but his daughter's college selection process gave him a new perspective. He shares his insights on what marketers are doing right (and wrong) and how they can improve everything from websites to acceptance letters.

Building Community Five Minutes at a Time
CURRENTS Article Students, alumni, faculty, even parents, at Viewpoint School in California come together at lunch a few times each year to present TED-style talks—known as 5Ups—with the goal of inspiring, igniting, and informing the community. The talks, which are recorded and made available on the school's YouTube channel, are intended to demonstrate Viewpoint's values, vision, and commitment to lifelong learning.

Odds and Ends: Big Man on Campus
CURRENTS Article Ernie G, a spokesperson for the Hispanic College Fund, delivers jokes across the United States to inspire current and prospective Latino college students.

Atrévete a Ser el Primero [Dare to Be First]
CURRENTS Article The University of Delaware launched a website in Spanish in November 2011. This online foray into another language is an important step in the institution's continuing globalization and its goal to develop a more diverse campus community.

Sample Collection The Library maintains this collection of education institutions' infographics and data visualizations used to convey advancement-related data and stories.

Good Question Does CASE have resources that discuss best practices for designing infographics? What about examples of infographics created for advancement purposes?

"Live Conversations" Ranked Most Influential in College Selection
Article,  BriefCASE Article A new survey reveals that conversations with campus representatives can be the “most influential experience” for many students and their parents when selecting a college or university.

All Together Now
CURRENTS Article This article looks at how the public affairs department and admissions office at the College of the Holy Cross collaborated to overhaul and update the college's admissions recruitment materials, print and online, and how the process not only improved the products but also improved the working relationship between the departments and set an example for the campus. The authors discuss the lessons they learned from the process and the importance of some of the choices they made along the way.

Does Your Website Need Work? You Might be Off the List
Article,  BriefCASE Article A new survey reports that nearly 50 percent of students say a bad institutional website experience would have a negative effect on their perception of a school—and one in five students says a bad website would cause them to remove a school from consideration.

Hacer contacto
CURRENTS Article Este artículo habla sobre cómo las instituciones están utilizando, mensajes de texto, video, correos electrónicos, blogs, foros de discusión en línea, redes sociales y aplicaciones para el teléfono celular como medios de mercadotecnia para alcanzar a futuros y actuales estudiantes que consideran que el correo electrónico es un medio lento y pasado de moda.

Influencing the Influencers
CURRENTS Article This article discusses the growing trend of U.S. four-year institutions collecting e-mail addresses from parents of applicants. Some institutions are using this information as a marketing tool to involve parents in the college selection and decision-making process.

Making Contact
CURRENTS Article This article discusses how institutions are using texting, video e-mail, marketing techniques, student blogs, private social networks, mobile applications, and more to try to reach prospective and currents students at a time when e-mail is viewed as old-fashioned and slow.

Students Rank Fees, Courses as Top Content on University, College Websites
Article,  BriefCASE Article When it comes to the content on college and university websites, 54 percent of college-bound high school students rank academic-related information as the most valuable with 30 percent saying cost-related content is the most valuable.

Acting Their Age
CURRENTS Article Adult students are becoming a target audience for many institutions. But reaching them can be difficult---they have different goals and different reasons why they are going back to school. Find out how your institution can target its communications to this untraditional cohort.

Advance Work: Viva la Vida
CURRENTS Article Mexico's Universidad Anáhuac produces a monthly magazine aimed at prospective students. The magazine features photos of secondary students at their own schools as well as at university events and helps the teenagers feel connected to the university before they have even applied.

Outlook: Beyond the Digital Divide
CURRENTS Article New research shows that black and Hispanic students use digital tools in the college search process just as much, if not more, than white students do. Institutions should employ multiple technological tools to recruit a diverse class.

UK Universities Marketing Forum
The Universities’ Marketing Forum is a voluntary association of University Directors of UK Marketing and Recruitment. The Executive Director of CASE Europe acts as Secretary to this committee.

Advance Work: Old-School Intelligence Gathering
CURRENTS Article Survey shows that vast majority of high school seniors aren't using social networking sites to find out more about prospective colleges.

Canadian Institutions Look Abroad to Slow Growth at Home
Article,  BriefCASE Article Faced with declining undergraduate enrollment, more universities in Canada are stepping up marketing and communications initiatives and expanding recruitment efforts abroad.

Proactive Marketing Helps Draw Grad Students to Canada
Article,  BriefCASE Article Targeted marketing campaigns have helped boost the number of Iranian graduate students to Canadian universities.

Advance Work: Off to College, Via Reality TV
CURRENTS Article Five U.K. universities offer full-ride scholarships via an unusual reality TV program.

Advance Work: A Techy Tour
CURRENTS Article Prospective students at California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo, can take a tour of the campus using a GPS device.

Publications Program Improvement: North Shore Country Day School - Silver Award
Best Practice North Shore Country Day School redesigned its admissions publications in 2007.

Publications Program Improvement: Fairfield College Preparatory School - Bronze Award
Best Practice Fairfield College Preparatory School undertook a project to redesign its admissions marketing materials in 2006-2007. The project included a redesigned viewbook, search brochure and advertising poster; partially redesigned admissions application forms; and a new information bulletin.

Talking Points: From Dog Tags to Degrees
CURRENTS Article This column discusses the 2008 Veterans Education Assistance Act, which expands the original GI Bill, and points out ways in which institutions can best serve student veterans.

Advance Work: Timing is Everything
CURRENTS Article Davidson College took advantage of its unanticipated success in NCAA men's basketball tournament to pitch itself to prospective students.

Power of Profiling
CURRENTS Article Public four-year colleges and universities have joined a voluntary effort to provide more consistent, comparable, and transparent information on the undergraduate student experience to prospective students and their families. Through the Web reporting template called College Portrait, students now have access to common data on institutional characteristics and campus life.

Advance Work: Bugged About Recruiting
CURRENTS Article A welding rodeo is not your common campus event, but it is the perfect recruitment and community building tool for one technical college in Washington.

Postcard from St. Petersburg
CURRENTS Article The British Council reaches out to potential students in Russia.

Publications Program Improvement: Berkeley Carroll School - Gold Medal
Best Practice After an audit of Berkeley Carroll School's marketing and communications materials, the school redesigned all of its print and electronic publications as a part of a revised marketing and communications strategy to attract parents and students.

Print External Audience Tabloids and Newsletters: Bryant University - Bronze Medal
Best Practice UpClose is a quarterly undergraduate admissions publication that is mailed to 41,000 prospective students.

Student Recruitment Publications Packages: Wellington School - Silver Medal
Best Practice "We are Wellington" materials are the flagship pieces of the Wellington School brand. The look and voice that started with them now permeate all outreach efforts--from the website to the magazine to capital campaign materials. Embedded in the materials are consistent key messages that reflect Wellington's philosophy, "proof points" that give evidence of how these goals are realized, and real-time photographs. This authenticity is the result of two years of collaboration among marketing professionals and Wellington stakeholders; the messages were mined through extensive research and review.

Individual Public Relations and Community Relations Projects: University of Washington, Tacoma - Gold Medal
Best Practice In April 2005, the governor signed legislation making the University of Washington, Tacoma, a four-year school. Advancement staff had only 18 months until the first day of class and about five months until prime application season. High schoolers didn't know they could enter as freshmen, and other institutions had been communicating with potential students for a year or longer. UW Tacoma's objective was to create a marketing program to fill 140 seats with qualified freshmen for fall 2006, while establishing a brand that emphasized its strengths and minimized its weaknesses.

Student Recruitment Publications Packages: Simon’s Rock College of Bard - Grand Gold Medal
Best Practice The primary objective for this campaign was to recruit high school students to apply after they finished tenth or eleventh grades--an early college option offered at Simon's Rock College of Bard. Using newly redesigned materials, the college saw an 80 percent increase in applications compared to the number received by the same date in the previous year.

Student Recruitment Publications Packages: Saint Anselm College - Bronze Medal
Best Practice The "Bright Ethical Leaders for a New Generation" admissions communication sequence was developed to position Saint Anselm College in such a way that would enable it to identify and own an important place in the world of higher education. The aim was to clarify the value and relevance of a Saint Anselm education, so it could be easily understood and embraced by all of the college’s constituents.

Student Recruitment Publications Packages: New York University - Bronze Medal
Best Practice The overall goal of the Undergraduate Admissions Package was to introduce prospective students to New York University, its seven undergraduate colleges and its more than 160 academic programs/majors. Publications targeted high school students in the top five percent of their class who were interested in attending college in an urban environment.

Student Recruitment Publications Packages: Oral Roberts University - Bronze Medal
Best Practice The materials in Oral Roberts University's undergraduate admissions package were completely revamped to match the new branding initiative at the university.

Individual Public Relations and Community Relations Projects: California State University Chancellor's Office - Silver Medal
Best Practice California State University has produced the "How to Get to College" poster program since 1999. It is one component of CSU's comprehensive outreach/retention strategies to help students, parents, teachers, and administrators better understand what is required to prepare for and succeed in college. The poster is available in English, Spanish, Chinese, Korean and Vietnamese. A companion Web site is available in English and Spanish.

Advance Work: Woman to Woman
CURRENTS Article In an effort to increase female enrollment, MIT Sloan School of Management asked 20 female students to collaborate and tell their stories in a 12-page booklet for prospective students.

Dispelling the Millennial Myth
CURRENTS Article In this article, the authors take a closer look at Millennial theory as described by Neil Howe and William Strauss. Their books, Millennials Rising and Millennials Go to College, are primary resources for information about Millennials--students born in or after 1982--including characteristics, traits, etc. Much of this has become common knowledge and accepted as fact, but the authors of this article caution campus communicators against relying solely on Howe and Strauss’ descriptions of students for their marketing efforts. They don’t completely disagree with Howe and Strauss, but they expose Howe and Strauss research/data as somewhat flawed and offer alternative sources of more longitudinal data that offer a more accurate portrait of students today. They also offer a point/counterpoint perspective on what Howe and Strauss say and some alternative ideas that are likely more relevant.

Soul Story
CURRENTS Article This article looks at how spirituality has become an important factor for campuses to consider when marketing to and communicating with prospective students. The article points out that it’s not necessarily religion that students are looking for, but help in finding meaning in their lives and support and help in developing their values and ideals and beliefs. Religion and faith may or may not be a part of it, but students are looking to college to help them in ways that go beyond academics, and, the author argues, it’s the job of campus marketers to be keenly aware of this market, to understand how their motivations intersect with what their campuses offer, and to learn to talk about these intersections in compelling ways. The article is based in large part on data and the premise of a UCLA/Higher Education Research Institute project/study, “Spirituality in Higher Education: A National Study of College Students’ Search for Meaning and Purpose.”

Message Mavens
CURRENTS Article Based on insight from admissions deans, this article offers a preview of tomorrow’s students, alumni, and donors, based on applicants’ essays, e-mails, and interviews. Some of their insights bear out Millennial trends--a generation of kids who like and admire their parents and see them as very much a part of their undergraduate lives, as well as a service-minded streak. But another picture emerges of this up-and-coming generation. It is a picture of a “message savvy” generation that would make branding gurus proud. This article gives an overview of students today and explores the traits that make the current crop of prospective students a message-savvy group who market themselves and their ideas.

Clear It Up
CURRENTS Article Constituents increasingly want and expect the admissions process to be open. They want answers, guidance, explanations when applicants don't get in, and so on. This article explores the issues surrounding admissions with which campus communicators find themselves grappling, including how to communicate policies to various audiences, including prospective students, parents, high school counselors, legislators, the media, and the public; what kinds of information to provide; and how much information to provide.

AdvanceWork: Charitable Applications
CURRENTS Article Many institutions charge application fees, but Bryn Mawr College has waived them for students who prefer to use the money to support a worthy cause. According to Dean of Admissions and Financial Aid Jennifer Rickard, the option helps the college “convey part of who we are to the world.” Nearly a quarter of Bryn Mawr applicants have chosen to redirect their application fee, generating more than $22,000 in charitable giving.

A Separate Piece
CURRENTS Article Parents have become increasingly important as a campus constituency, a change driven by both financial and generational factors. Their increased involvement--from recruitment to commencement--demands an organized communications effort that strikes a balance between information and involvement, and many campuses have responded by adding programming and dedicated staff. This article outlines essential strategies for communicating with parents, including creating separate experiences for them.

Who Says They Matter?
CURRENTS Article Campus communicators should consider how parents and students use the popular guides in their decision-making processes. The author, a guidance counselor, offers an on-the-ground perspective based on her own experiences and interviews with other counselors, parents, and students. A companion piece to "A Thin Line Between Love and Hate."

Two Perspectives on Legacy Admissions
CURRENTS Article The college admissions process and media coverage of it has reached fever pitch in recent years. The controversy over legacy admissions is a particular point of contention among academics and constituents alike. Two campus administrators examine both sides of the legacy issue in this pro/con article.

Stand Out in a Crowd
CURRENTS Article Branding is challenging for colleges and universities, whose brands are diffuse and complex and whose faculty, alumni, students, and advancement and admission officers send diverse messages. This article describes a proposed market taxonomy for postsecondary education based on brand characteristics and discusses market research, positioning, and the fundamentals of brand management. Includes brief case studies from Trinity University in San Antonio and Ohio University. This article is of interest to marketers who deal with branding and student recruitment as well as marketing and communications managers.

AdvanceWork: Natural Networkers
CURRENTS Article Home-schooled students are a viable recruitment niche

Talking Points: The Lure of Early Admission
CURRENTS Article Increasingly students use early action and early admission to improve their chances of getting accepted to a college or university. Critics charge that these programs benefit the institutions more than the students, however, because they raise yield numbers, which affect rankings, and they prevent students from comparing financial aid packages when choosing a campus.

AdvanceWork: New Cues on Hues
CURRENTS Article To appeal to today’s youth, campuses need to expand their color repertoire in recruitment and marketing publications. Creative use of vibrant hues can attract attention and breathe new life into print materials. To spot current color trends, a design consultant recommends looking at teen fashions and cosmetics, designer paints, and MTV.

AdvanceWork: Cooperation Beats Competition
CURRENTS Article Marketing professionals at 11 colleges and universities in Nova Scotia, Canada, have joined forces to promote their institutions to international students.

AdvanceWork: Student E-Recruitment
CURRENTS Article Rather than sorting through their snail mail when they arrive home, most high school students immediately log on to the family computer and check their e-mail.

Closing Remarks: Staying Grounded
CURRENTS Article The hype surrounding the Internet can obscure the ongoing value of old media for attracting students. College guidebooks, traditional class instruction, and print and broadcast advertising all remain important marketing tools.

Tech Support: This Brochure's for You
CURRENTS Article Customize your recruitment publications with print-on-demand

Focusing on Minority Recruitment
CURRENTS Article Campuses use creative measures to promote diversity amid anti-affirmative action movements

A Jury of Their Peers
CURRENTS Article A focus group of college-bound high school students can offer insights about the effectiveness of recruitment publications. Benson, publications director at Washington University in St. Louis, has found that students prefer straightforward messages over slick copy or catchy slogans; they want photographs to depict the campus honestly; they will notice if photos of people aren't current; and they want to locate relevant information easily. She offers these tips: 1) conduct your focus group with a partner; 2) establish relationships with high school counselors and teachers; 3) realize you can't please everyone; and 4) streamline your discussions. Benson discusses when to hire a market research firm and how to present your findings. A sidebar answers frequently asked questions about focus groups.

Mind over Market
CURRENTS Article The author discusses a strategy of student recruitment called competitive positioning. The first step in this process is to research where your institution stands at the present time. It is essential to define a target audience and region, determine what positions the target students value, and define your present position. The second step is to plan a competitive positioning program specifically for your institution. Step three is to execute the strategy and hopefully reposition your institution to attract those students in your target audience.

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