Just as artificial intelligence is in the early stages of impacting practically every business, AI is set to assume a bigger role across college campuses. But will the growing reliance on robots compromise the human touch that goes hand in hand with an institution’s identity (and that of their student body)?
It’s more likely that prospective college students melt - or fail to enroll in college - during the summer because of lots of small obstacles rather than one large problem. Some students can’t meet a deadline because they have no transportation, others aren’t sure how to fill out forms, some aren’t sure how to get their medical records, and many simply don’t know who to turn to for answers.
On a panel called “The Power of Artificial Intelligence” at Cal State’s Graduation Initiative 2025 Symposium, our CEO Drew Magliozzi spoke alongside several campus leaders about artificial intelligence’s impact on retention, summer melt, and holistic student support from enrollment to graduation. Placing an emphasis on AI as a listening tool, the panel discussed how AI is keeping students connected to their institutions and the resources that matter most through 24/7 on-demand assistance.
Building a conversational strategy
Conversations naturally have the greatest influence on human behavior because we’re wired to learn from them. That’s why we’ve baked one overriding principle into our recipe for student-centric communication: make it conversational.
Back in our first post on student-centric communication, we discussed how communication bakes into student engagement like eggs in a cake: it holds connections intact and binds outcomes across the entire student life cycle.
The smallest tweaks in choice environment influence our decisions on a daily basis: we’re more likely to eat fruit if it’s presented at eye level, get a flu shot if it’s complimentary at the pharmacy, or even recycle when its bin is bigger than the trash.
Every year, colleges have to do more with less. Their goals around enrollment, net tuition, diversity and academic achievement increase, while their resources often do not.