Key elements of a successful SEM plan

Strategic Enrollment Management (SEM) provides a unique framework for improving both student and institutional outcomes. It facilitates student access to and success in higher education, the transmission of best business practices, and comprehensive institutional planning.

So how does an institution create a cohesive SEM plan that incorporates the different wants and needs of stakeholders?

Dr. Karen Miller, Vice President of Institutional Research and Enrollment Management at Cuyahoga Community College, outlines the basic starting point for writing a SEM plan. “Institutions need to determine why they are creating a SEM plan—declining enrollment, low retention rates, low conversion rates, etc.,” she said.

Miller identifies two key elements of a SEM plan:

1) Understand your college culture.

2) Create clear and measurable goals, strategies, and action plans.

With many different stakeholders involved, consensus can be difficult.

“If the SEM plan truly represents all stakeholders, all views/perspectives should be taken into consideration,” said Dr. Miller. One way to mitigate this is to clarify roles early to help gain consensus later. “As a key starting point, it’s important to define who owns the SEM plan and who needs to be involved.”

Dr. Miller and Tom Green, Associate Executive Director of Consulting and SEM at AACRAO, will present a free webinar titled “How to Write a SEM Plan: Something for Everyone” on February 7 at 2 PM ET. For more information and to register, visit the webinar page on AACRAO’s website.