Feature

Office of the Registrar, Academic Advising, & Information Technology, Catawba College

Digital Registration With a Human Touch

The classic registration scenario of bouncing students from their advisor to select classes, to the Business Office to check for holds, and finally to the Registrar’s Office to stand in line is so 20th century—but hard to escape. Everyone at Catawba College (N.C.) agreed it was time to modernize, but faculty advisors did not want their role in the process diminished or to lose a touch point with students. “Advising is an important part of Catawba’s mission to give every student the personal attention needed to be successful,” shares Joanna Jasper, chief information officer.

Registrars Office & Information Technology, Houston Community College

“SPEEDE” Transcript Evaluation

As students “swirl” through higher education, taking classes at multiple institutions either consecutively or simultaneously, the need for institutions to quickly receive and process transcripts becomes more important. To comply with accreditation standards, Houston Community College was supposed to have all transcripts evaluated by the end of a student’s first semester, a goal their paper-based process was not allowing them to meet in 2008.

Student Affairs Center, Ogeechee Technical College

Touch Screen Organizational Machine

At some point during the year, nearly every one of the 4,400 students at Ogeechee Technical College (Ga.) will have a reason to visit the college’s Student Affairs Center (SAC). This central administrative unit houses Admissions, Financial Aid, the Registrar, and Career Services. In 2011, 24,869 student appointments were made with as many as 320 students a day visiting during peak times; during quieter periods, between 80 and 100 students are seen.

Procurement Department, The George Washington University

A Single Source, Supply-wise

Buying stationery supplies, scientific equipment, and office furniture hardly qualifies as capital expenditures. But shop for enough pens, beakers, and chairs, and the amounts add up.

That is especially true at an institution as large as The George Washington University (D.C.), whose decentralized purchasing process made it difficult to keep track of the school’s almost countless minor purchases, to say nothing of getting staff to buy from vendors with which it had negotiated good prices.

Student Services Center, Wilkes University

A Better One-Stop Experience

Creating a one-stop student services center in 2005 at Wilkes University (Pa.) seemed like a good idea at the time. These popular organizational structures have typically been a cost-cutting measure introduced to allow educational institutions to do more with less. At Wilkes, a one-stop shop was created by co-locating the services of the Registrar, Financial Aid, Admissions Processing, and Cashier.

Office of Information Technology, Texas A&M International University

Purchasing Power

Buying computers for a college campus is no small feat. In addition to requisitioning and specing them before the purchase, there is the configuration and instillation after the purchase to worry about.

Advising Department, Wake Technical Community College

Dare to Excel

Sometimes increasing efficiency requires cross-functional teams, complex software solutions, and weeks of training and implementation. And sometimes it’s as simple as replacing a clipboard and sign-in sheet with a commonly used program, such as Microsoft Excel.

School of Law Dean’s Office, Mercer University

Winning the Storage Wars

Like most academic institutions, the Mercer University School of Law (Ga.) generates a lot of paperwork. However, the Dean’s Office team knew there had to be a better way to process and store key financial and administrative files than to simply fill banker’s boxes and stack them in the school’s dingy attic and basement. That attic was almost completely filled, anyhow. All 1,500 square feet were stuffed with boxes of files dating back to the 1950s, says Michael Dean, associate dean and COO of the law school.

Human Resources & Payroll, George Mason University

Tax Time—Online

Until a few years ago, every January, staff in the Human Resources and Payroll department at George Mason University (Va.) began the arduous task of printing and mailing more than 10,000 W-2 statements for faculty, staff, and student workers. To meet the federal requirement that all W-2s be issued no later than January 31st, four people normally worked an entire weekend—from Friday afternoon through Sunday afternoon—printing, sorting, and readying the W-2s to be mailed, says Sue Tinsman, director of payroll and human resource information systems (HRIS).

Information Technology Department, Salisbury University

DIY Data

Like many institutions over the last several years, Salisbury University (Md.) paid handsomely for an enterprise resource planning system. Also like many institutions, Salisbury discovered that while its ERP solution handled larger functions just fine, there were gaps in the system—in areas such as housing, medical and athletic records, course evaluation, and human resources search management—that required the purchase and implementation of third-party products to fill.

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