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 Gone are the precooked burgers and warmed-over chicken patties that once dotted the college dining hall landscape. 

“Today it’s all about freshness, healthy food cooked to order, and customization,” says Mike Purcell, president of CulinArt Group, which recently took over the dining options at a large public university in the northeast. “Students want to know where products come from and what’s in them.”

Just five years ago, the business office at James Madison University in Virginia was spending about $25 for every refund check it processed. Multiply that by the tens of thousands of students who received such checks each semester, including summers, and the cost quickly added up. 

Today, the school has all but eliminated paper checks in favor of BankMobile Refund Management, an electronic disbursement system that processes and disburses financial aid credit balances and other refunds. 

At Cleveland State Community College in Tennessee, all 3,500 credential-seeking students must see an academic adviser before registering for classes each semester. Until this past summer, students used paper sign-in sheets at the Advising Center, then stayed nearby until their name was called. 

The University of Arizona wanted to rethink its course site design workflows to empower faculty to teach courses the way they want to teach them.

California State University is the largest four-year public university system in the United States. With 23 campuses and eight off-campus centers, it serves over 479,000 students each year.

Like other higher education institutions, most of CSU’s renovation, alteration and construction projects are concentrated during specific times of year. With campuses spread across the state, access to qualified contractors can be difficult.

Over the past decade, the eLearning team at Seminole State College of Florida saw video organically grow to become a regular part of students’ learning experiences. But as different instructors and departments were starting to adopt the technology, there was a lack of standardization, which quickly began to create a number of new challenges when it came to recording, streaming and sharing video across campus.

Ricky Fuentes, the director of user services at Clovis Community College in New Mexico, was staring down two challenges: Providing dedicated servers upon request and refining the backup process on those servers.

“If a department says they had software that needs a dedicated server, I would have to find a vendor to help build out a server, which would take weeks,” says Fuentes. “And with the servers that we did have, the backup process seemed kind of archaic, and I wasn’t really comfortable with it.”

 Financially, the student population of any community college is diverse. From new students to lifelong learners to professionals looking for new skills, each comes with different circumstances and expectations. Accommodating everyone is complex. It’s no secret that community colleges nationwide are continually working around budget cuts and staffing shortfalls. For Illinois Central College, rethinking its campus commerce strategy provided a roadmap to overcoming these challenges while still providing outstanding service and a learning environment focused on success for all.

Campus safety has become increasingly complex. Higher ed leaders face the threat of serious safety incidents on their campuses every day, while changing legislative mandates only add to the complexity. Ensuring that safety training and processes are up to date can be challenging. As a result, many institutions are adopting more efficient processes and individualized technology solutions that improve campus safety while saving time and money.

Transforming finance to meet the challenges of processing more information efficiently and turning that information into deeper insights is an organizational imperative. These transformation initiatives are also focused on minimizing non-value add work, decreasing reporting cycle time and improving collaboration.

This webcast discussed how finance teams are turning to the cloud and digital tools to address these challenges and take their processes into the future. 

MIKE ROST

VP of Corporate Marketing 

Workiva

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