Case Studies

Portland State University

Location: Portland, OR

Objective: Part of the Oregon University System and serving close to 28,000 students, PSU brought in AACRAO Consulting to conduct a review of recruitment and retention, with particular attention to the effective use of enrollment-related technologies. Ultimately, the University needed to prioritize action items to improve its enrollment outcomes for the near term, as well as identify next steps for long-term enrollment success.

Challenge: Before consulting with AACRAO, PSU had limited its investments in technology and was wary of the value of technology in reaching institutional goals. Before investing in any additional technology systems, the University had to be sure that the investments were strategically sound and would generate a return.

Solution: Even before arriving at the campus, AACRAO consultants completed an extensive review of documents, publications, and university goals as they related to PSU’s recruitment, retention, enrollment and technology assets. Conducting a series of campus visits, we examined the operations, leadership and tactics of multiple PSU departments and functions. Based on our evaluation, we developed a comprehensive set of actionable and practical recommendations in five key focus areas: recruitment, retention, technology, diversity, and community college relations.

Results: As a result of the assessment and recommendations, PSU has clearly defined the University’s next steps regarding a comprehensive strategic enrollment plan. AACRAO Consulting recommendations for technology solutions and strategic enrollment management resonated with the campus leadership, who are now ready to invest in SEM and technology as a tool to reach enrollment targets