New Solution Provides Students with Personalized Career Maps During Enrollment Process

AstrumU® platform analyzes millions of data points from employers and universities to show prospective students the return on investment from specific programs

March 18, 2021 9:00 AM EDT

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KIRKLAND, Wash., March 18, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- AstrumU®, a Seattle-based startup that is pioneering the use of machine learning to forecast the value of educational experiences in the labor market, today announced the release of its new Enrollment Marketing Toolkit. The new application is designed to help colleges quantify the value of education experiences for prospective students at the front end of the enrollment process, providing them with personalized ROI estimates for specific degrees, majors and courses based on each student's unique background and goals.

The Gies College of Business at the University of Illinois-Urbana Champaign, which offers three rapidly growing online graduate programs that appeal to learners with a wide range of career experiences and goals, is one of the first to pilot the new program.

"At a time when so many students and families are facing significant financial and economic hardship, colleges and universities have an imperative to not only focus on the affordability of the degree, but to provide clear and actionable information—early in the application process—on how each academic experience translates into an economic opportunity," said Kacie Jones, associate director of admissions and recruitment for Gies College of Business' online programs. "With AstrumU, we have the data to show prospective students how our programs can help them get where they want to go at a more personalized, granular level than traditional employment reports. With a clear path to their career goal, prospective students can apply with confidence."

In the wake of the pandemic, colleges and universities across the country are experiencing steep enrollment drops. Overall higher education enrollments dropped 2.5%, with particularly steep declines among low-income, first-generation and minority students. In response, institutions are increasingly focused on demonstrating that their programs are not just affordable, but also offer a strong connection to in-demand careers and a positive return on investment in the labor market. Research shows that career relevance—along with cost—is the primary motivation for a majority of college students in choosing a program.

The Enrollment Marketing Toolkit is powered by AstrumU®'s Translation Engine to demonstrate the ROI of higher education programs to prospective students. Using the toolkit, institutions can easily integrate insights on career outcomes into their existing enrollment efforts, increasing the effectiveness of student-facing outreach, marketing and communication. Colleges and universities can differentiate programs by sharing real alumni outcomes and demonstrating the impact of academic experiences for the career prospects of each learner.

Currently, ten U.S. graduate business programs, including the Gies College of Business at the University of Illinois-Urbana Champaign, have plans to pilot the Enrollment Marketing Toolkit, enabling prospective students to simulate how their programs can help them increase their salaries, switch career paths, or gain specific skills required by high-demand career paths. A total of twenty universities will form an initial cohort of pioneering institutions who will gain early access to the tool to boost student enrollment and retention using insights from the platform's analysis of millions of student educational and career journeys.

"Despite the challenges created by COVID-19, the research is clear that the value of a college degree has never been higher, but students need better information on how programs pay off in an uncertain labor market in order to enroll with confidence," said Adam Wray, founder and CEO of AstrumU. "With our Enrollment Marketing Toolkit, colleges and universities can provide students with personalized maps to their career goals, showing how specific courses and programs will prepare them for success in the workforce."

An upcoming webinar will provide a detailed overview of AstrumU®'s Enrollment Marketing Toolkit. To learn more about increasing your recruitment funnel conversion rates through demonstrating personalized ROI for every prospective student, register for the webinar here.

About AstrumU®: AstrumU® translates educational experiences into economic opportunity. We are on a mission to quantify the return on education investment for learners, education providers, and employers. We help institutions measure the value created for incoming and returning students, while assisting them in securing industry partnerships that lead students seamlessly into high-demand career pathways. Institutions partner with AstrumU® to drive enrollment and increase alumni and corporate engagement, while extending economic mobility opportunities inclusively to all learners.


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