Pre-Conference Workshops

Full-Day Pre-Conference Workshop A:
Strategic Planning for Post-Secondary Professionals

Presented by:
Graham Donald, President, Brainstorm Strategy Group Inc.
Tuesday, November 12, 9:00 AM – 4:30 PM

Driving change starts with effective planning that engages your team, your stakeholders, other departments or faculties, and even your broader communities. This full-day pre-conference workshop will provide training in strategic planning that has been developed specifically for leaders of departments or divisions on campus.

The workshop will focus on developing your process for creating clarity through an effective mission statement, definition of goals and objectives, and supporting your team working collectively. The workshop will not be particularly focused on enrolment planning, but rather share principles and processes to maximize the effectiveness of any team or group in an educational setting.

The program will be led by Brainstorm Strategy Group’s Graham Donald who has experience facilitating strategic planning with offices at McGill University, Simon Fraser University, Rutgers University, Wilfrid Laurier University, UBC, George Brown College, University of Regina, Simon Fraser University, York University and numerous others.

This full-day pre-conference program includes a continental breakfast, lunch and two refreshment breaks.


Full-Day Pre-Conference Workshop B:
Foundations of Canadian SEM Success

Presented by
Dr. Clayton Smith
, Associate Professor, University of Windsor and Senior Consultant, AACRAO Consulting
Susan Gottheil, Vice-Provost (Students), University of Manitoba
Tuesday, November 12, 9:00 AM – 4:30 PM

Are you looking to re-boot you institutional SEM efforts? Or perhaps you’re new to SEM?

This full-day, pre-conference workshop outlines how strategic enrolment management (SEM) serves as a planning framework for shaping enrolment and supporting student success at higher educational institutions of all types. In this workshop, we examine SEM core concepts, explore the changing demographic and social environment, discuss how SEM can support the achievement of recruitment, retention, and completion goals, compare SEM practices across Canadian colleges and universities, and identify the campus culture factors that support successful SEM implementation.

Through informational presentations as well as interactive exercises, you will leave this workshop understanding how you can play a key role establishing a SEM culture on your campus.

This full-day pre-conference program includes continental breakfast, lunch and two refreshment breaks.


Pre-Conference Workshop C:
Creating a Memorable Campus Visit Experience

Presented by
Dr. Jim Black, President, SEM Works
Tuesday, November 12, 1:30 – 4:30 PM

It’s past time to throw out the traditional playbook for campus visits. There is nothing unique or memorable about the “old school” approach to the campus visit experience. Visits to campus represent the “make or break” decision point for many prospective students, so the experience deserves the same level of investment, planning, and execution that Disney gives to every attraction at its theme parks. Disney innovatively designs every “guests’ experience” to ensure a lasting memory emerges. Colleges and universities can benefit from the lessons learned by Disney.

Through this workshop, participants will gain insights into how to deconstruct and reengineer every facet of the visit experience. Specifically, the pre-visit, arrival, campus visit, and post-visit experiences will be illuminated with underlying tenets, tips, best practices, and much more.

This half-day pre-conference program includes refreshment breaks (no meals).


Half-Day Pre-Conference Workshop D
Digital Marketing Strategies to Boost Enrolment

Presented by
Victoria Bomben, Independent Consultant
Tuesday, November 12, 9:00 AM – 12:00 PM

During times of political turbulence, financial pressures, enrolment challenges and demographic shifts, it is now more important than ever for higher education marketers, recruitment and admissions specialists to recognize how student decision stages fit within the context of the enrolment management pipeline and align their digital strategies to attract, recruit, and admit the right students into the right programs.

During this workshop, we will:

  • Review how students’ needs vary while they research, evaluate and select their post-secondary institution of choice
  • Assess students’ use of digital channels, content expectations and levels of engagement as this digital savvy audience progresses along its decision journey
  • Map students’ decision stages to institution’s enrolment pipeline and pinpoint what digital strategies/tactics would be the most relevant at each stage
  • Work through identifying where current gaps may exist between existing enrolment practices and students’ expectations
  • Discuss strategies, practices and digital marketing tactics that would address enrolment challenges and bridge identified gaps

At the end of the workshop, participants will have a good appreciation of how to strategically leverage digital channels to reach and convert their target audience. All attendees will walk away with templates, worksheets and resources they can immediately use back at the office and begin strengthening their enrolment marketing practice.