The outbreak of the new coronavirus (COVID-19) has created a challenging situation for many, and we empathize with everybody including universities and students around the world who have been affected. There are currently students unable to travel to their home countries as well as others who cannot return to the U.S. Additionally, many education fairs in China and around Asia have been cancelled due to the outbreak. The impact is also felt by international admissions as some may defer their admissions to a later date. It's important that you keep in touch with your students, provide them with information, and keep your channels of communication open.
Things You Can Do Right Now in Response to the Virus
Prioritize making your students feel safe.
Create a web page where everyone including students, parents, and faculty can find the latest information on how the outbreak affects them.
Adapt your messaging. Be sensitive to the tone of your communication surrounding the virus.
Be prepared to answer any questions regarding your institution’s policies and responses to the virus. Anticipate the need to adjust with each new development and be ready to respond quickly.
Offer flexibility in your application deadlines and intake process. For example, with TOEFL and IELTS delaying their testing schedules, schools that can adjust admissions criteria around testing will stand out.
If your current recruitment plan relies heavily on China, consider diversifying your target regions. With the uncertain effects of the virus, this may be a good time to consider increasing investment in other markets.
"I applied to UNT (University of North Texas). I got in and I'm set to start my second semester now in January 2019. Thanks for all your help!"— Inger Mariama Marong, From Norway, University of North Texas
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