Unveiling the Power of EdTech for Non-traditional Students: Insights from SXSW EDU

Unveiling the Power of EdTech for Non-traditional Students: Insights from SXSW EDU
by
Shelby Moquin
on
May 17, 2024
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About the Blog

In a recent captivating episode of "The Higher Ed Geek" podcast, host Dustin Ramsdell, dove headfirst into an insightful conversation with Terah Crews, CEO of ReUp Education. This discussion held live at SXSW EDU 2024, explored the transformative role of educational technology in supporting non-traditional students. Terah's journey from her foundational days at Entangled Ventures to her pivotal role at ReUp Education underscores a deep commitment to enhancing educational pathways for adults with some college experience but no degree.

Transforming Institutional Support and Student Engagement

The Institutional Impact

ReUp Education's mission is twofold, impacting both institutions and students. For institutions, the focus is on tackling the enrollment challenges exacerbated by the demographic cliff. Terah Crews pointed out that engaging the "Some College, No Credential" demographic is not just a recruitment strategy but a critical pathway for institutions to stabilize or even grow their enrollment numbers.

Moreover, the shift from viewing student success merely as retention to understanding it as a long-term commitment to re-engaging dropouts marks a significant transformation in institutional strategy. This broader perspective is not only about filling seats but fostering a genuine commitment to lifelong learning and success.

The Student Experience

For students, the impact of ReUp's work is profound and personal. By reaching out to individuals who have been out of the educational system for years, sometimes decades, ReUp reignites the possibility of completing their education. This outreach is often the first time these individuals are asked about their educational aspirations after a long hiatus, making the interaction significantly impactful.

The tailored approach that ReUp employs, using patented technology to predict motivators and detractors, helps create personalized support pathways. This method not only re-engages students but also aligns their educational goals with their current life circumstances, leading to transformative outcomes both personally and professionally.

Government's Role in Supporting Education

A newer focus for ReUp is its engagement with state governments, recognizing that their goals align closely with ReUp's mission. State governments, as Terah highlighted, have a vested interest in the success of these students, not only for educational achievement but also for economic reasons. By investing in students who have halted their education, states can enhance their workforce, reduce dependency on welfare programs, and increase overall economic stability.

A Call to Action for Higher Education

This discussion at SXSW EDU 2024 sheds light on the critical need for institutions and governments to rethink their approach to education, particularly for the 41 million Americans with some college experience but no degree. As Terah Crews passionately points out, ignoring this demographic is no longer an option if we are to address the educational and economic challenges ahead.

Key Takeaways:
  • Institutional Strategy: Viewing student success as a long-term commitment rather than a short-term metric.
  • Personalized Support: Employing technology and empathetic outreach to re-engage students on their terms.
  • Government Involvement: Recognizing the role of state governments in fostering educational success and economic growth.
Listen + Learn More

For those intrigued by this discussion and eager to learn more about the power of educational technology in reshaping non-traditional student engagement, listen to the full episode of "The Higher Ed Geek" with Terah Crews on the Enrollify podcast network. Discover how institutions and tech leaders like Terah Crews are innovating at the crossroads of education and technology. 

Shelby Moquin
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