Resilience Amidst a Global Pandemic
Going virtual, modifying operations, and increasing collaboration across campus allowed EMAS to meet its mission through COVID-19.
Despite the many challenges presented in the 2020-2021 academic year, Enrollment Management and Services (EMAS) fulfilled its mission and returned to normal operations in the fall of 2021. However, with an ability to pivot as environmental circumstances dictate.
Building Organizational Resilience
The pandemic affected all aspects of EMAS’ operations. Yet, most or all anticipated impacts were successfully mitigated. All units within EMAS transitioned to virtual or online formats to continue to serve students, families, faculty, and staff throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.
Going Virtual and Integrating New Media for Recruitment
Campus visits successfully moved to a virtual format for their campus tours and information sessions with virtual information sessions and QR code-enabled self-guided tours, integrating video, 3D tours, and photo galleries.
Undergraduate recruitment events were moved to virtual platforms both domestically and internationally.
During a two-day virtual “Experience NC State” event, students participated in over 65,000 total activities, including 2,100 participating in a session with Chancellor Woodson.
Other virtual recruitment activities included individual virtual appointments with admissions officers serving over 1,000 students. Engaging in virtual activities also allowed interaction with 36 of 58 North Carolina Community Colleges and 634 high schools across 37 states and 15 countries.
As a result, applications increased again with over 37,000 total applications, and the university welcomed the largest first-year class in the university’s history.
Elevating Support for Parents and Families
The Office of Parents and Families Services (PFS) elevated programming efforts, enhanced virtual event opportunities, and increased communications to support families during the 2020-2021 academic year.
PFS developed 42 new virtual programs to support and engage parents over the year, including Facebook Live webinars with campus partners and resources and virtual “coffee chat” drop-in hours for families to connect with PFS staff and students. PFS also hosted an entirely virtual Parents and Families Week with 35 unique events for families to connect and engage with the university.
Collaborating Across Campus
The Department of Registration and Records worked with Facilities, DELTA, and academic units to continually shift teaching spaces and course schedules to meet the needs of the university through the pandemic.
EMAS also collaborated with the Office of Information Technology in significant efforts to modify the student information system within COVID restrictions. These efforts include new grading and drop policies and processes, changes to the schedule of courses, changes to the handling of incomplete grades, modifications to the Change of Degree Application (CODA) and degree audit system, and changes to the withdrawal and satisfactory academic progress appeals process.
Wicked Problems: Wolfpack Solutions
In addition to modifications to business operations, the interdisciplinary course “Wicked Problems: Wolfpack Solutions” continued into its second year and was made available free to all incoming undergraduate students.
The course involved a team of faculty and staff spanning more than 25 departments, nine colleges, and four other academic units. Nearly 500 students completed the course, earning two credits toward graduation and introducing a wide variety of disciplines and multiple perspectives to address a wicked problem.
EMAS partnered with DELTA to communicate to all incoming students of the interdisciplinary course and deliver credit hours for the course within the student information system.