“If you build it, they will come.” While that might work for attracting baseball heroes of the past to your backyard, it certainly doesn’t work when recruiting adult students for graduate, continuing ed, and online programs.
Over the past few years, Carnegie has worked with several colleges and universities to critically examine their current and proposed educational offerings in order to assess two things: market and labor force demand. By utilizing a two-tiered research approach, we are able to help schools determine what programs they should offer, what the demands for these programs will be, what form the course delivery should take (in person, online, or hybrid), and much more. To do this we conduct a survey study with qualified prospective students to assess market demand and preferences while also examining data from multiple sources to understand what occupations are growing and needed in your region and what the competitive landscape is for these programs in your state and nearby markets.
By conducting program viability research, institutions are not only armed with data for approval and accreditation, they are also assured of two key things: 1) student interest in the chosen programs and 2) available job opportunities for graduates.
Graduate and adult recruitment is very program-centric. Unlike our friends on the undergraduate side, adult students typically enroll with a specific program and job goal in mind—they can’t be “undecided.” With this understanding, it is critical that you offer programs that meet their interests and offer an excellent chance of better employment upon graduation. Another key difference in graduate and adult education is how you market your offerings and recruit students; your efforts need to be much more program-specific.
If you would like more information on program viability research or our marketing services for graduate and adult recruitment, please click here.