Like a toddler taking their first step, the decision a person makes to enroll in college and continue their education is the hardest part. Full of anticipation and anxiety, the toddler takes that step with independence, but under the watchful eye of a protective parent. Some are off and running, while others need a finger to hold to stay balanced and on their feet.

A person’s decision to attend college and begin the enrollment process is much like the toddlers. It is full of anticipation of what lies ahead, but full of anxiety about the enrollment process and the fear of falling down. Questions are everywhere … Where do I go? Who is my advisor? What is a Registrar? Bursar? How am I going to pay for this?

Ivy Tech Community College is launching Express Enrollment Centers around the state that reinvent the enrollment process to be student-focused. Gone are the days of waiting in line to find out you’re in the wrong place and have to wait in yet another line.

The reinvention began with their re-evaluation of all of the traditional paper-driven processes, with a goal of eliminating the paper and allowing technology to stream-line the process. This eliminates the experience of traveling from office to office to manage each step of enrollment. The new approach will allow a student to make “One Stop” for all enrollment needs.

Schmidt Associates is helping the college create the environment that supports this vision. The concept reorganizes the traditional enrollment support functions around what is being called the “heart” of the enrollment center—where students use computer stations set in kiosks to complete their entire enrollment process. This is a place for students to do everything including selecting classes, filling out financial aid forms, paying for classes, and going through orientation. The student’s experience is under the watchful eye and support of Student Service Professionals that have knowledge of all of the enrollment functions and are available to answer questions as they arise. If a student needs additional support, small conference areas ring the kiosk area where the student can meet and discuss any enrollment issues.

With a little reorganization focused on the students, the Express Enrollment Center has taken shape. The pilots are now in operation in Ft. Wayne, Evansville, and Lafayette with plans to open new centers in Columbus, Sellersburg, and Indianapolis.

Ivy Tech, with the help of Schmidt Associates, is working to provide the new college student the support they need to take their first steps toward higher education.

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