Creating Admissions Process Efficiencies for Community Colleges

Improving the admissions process for your applicants can make a big difference in growing your applicant pool, even in times of declining enrollment. In our webinar, “Creating Efficiencies in the Admissions Process for Community Colleges,” Dr. Evangeline DeLeon, chair of the department of Nursing Education at Del Mar College, discussed how implementing NursingCAS helped her improve her application processes to ensure a better experience for applicants to her program and better processes and data for herself and her staff. Dr. DeLeon was joined by Liaison’s Hilda Mejia Abreu, executive director of program partnerships, who provided a quick demonstration of NursingCAS.

A community college in Corpus Christi, TX, Del Mar serves about 10,000 students, and has been graduating nursing students with an ASN degree for almost 50 years. Like the rest of Del Mar, the Nursing Education department is committed to providing their graduates with an excellent education and excellent career opportunities. They are also committed to helping their graduates pursue more advanced degrees in Nursing.

Why NursingCAS?

Prior to implementing NursingCAS to manage admissions in 2011, Dr. DeLeon explained, the Nursing Education program was struggling with challenges that are common to higher-education institutions: declining enrollment, paper-based application processes, overloaded staff, and a lack of centralized management of admissions. She needed a way to gain exposure for her program and to reduce the inefficiencies inherent in paper-based systems.

The decision to implement NursingCAS was an easy one. Dr. DeLeon said she was determined to bring NursingCAS to Del Mar the first time she saw it.

Better Outreach

NursingCAS offers national exposure to Del Mar’s Nursing Education program, and Dr. DeLeon credits this exposure with helping increase enrollment in per program in the face of declining enrollment across the field. This exposure also helps applicants to Del Mar identify future educational opportunities for themselves that are available not just locally but throughout the U.S.—which assists Dr. DeLeon in her efforts to encourage her graduates to pursue advanced degrees.

Improved Applicant Experience

NursingCAS made it easier for applicants to apply through its easy-to-use interface and the opportunity it gave Dr. DeLeon and her admissions coordinator to spend communicating with applicants.  As Hilda demonstrated, the helpful visual cues in NursingCAS guide applicants through the application process, and its accessibility from any mobile device and real-time status updates keep applicants aware of their progress and on top of approaching deadlines. In fact, Dr. DeLeon pointed out, because NursingCAS prevents applicants from submitting their applications until all required materials have been added, students are much less likely to miss the deadline because a of an incomplete applications.

Helping Staff Become More Effective

The move from a paper-based to a fully electronic system offered Dr. DeLeon and her admissions coordinator the ability to focus more on the students—instead of on the paperwork. With everything at their fingertips in NursingCAS, their office realized impressive efficiencies: a 50% reduction in administrative tasks and 90% reduction in time to verify transcripts, with an increase in applicants by 10%.

Gathering Data

Dr. DeLeon points to data collection and reporting through NursingCAS as essential for evidence-based planning and recruitment efforts. She can compare students to one another, figure out how to help them succeed, and reach out to students who weren’t accepted in the current year to identify ways to help them develop in the ways they need to so that they can gain acceptance in the future.

If you’re interested in learning more about implementing NursingCAS on your campus, take a few minutes to view the webinar recording and learn more about how NursingCAS can help you increase efficiencies.