AI-enabled chatbot communicates with new students via text; provides real-time, personalized guidance throughout the enrollment process
Incoming first-year students to St. Lawrence College (SLC) have a new resource to guide them through the admissions and enrollment process, thanks to an artificially intelligent chatbot launched in March 2019. The chatbot, known as PAL (Personal Assistant Line), was developed in partnership with AdmitHub, whose pioneering approach to conversational AI enables colleges and universities to provide applicants with proactive, personalized support and guidance.
“As a new generation of digitally savvy students arrives on campus, we have an unprecedented opportunity to rethink the way we support students in the transition to college,” said Stewart Clark, Director of Marketing, Communications and Recruitment at SLC. “By providing students with immediate, 24/7 support, we’re able to eliminate friction in the enrollment process and unlock time for our admissions team to provide hands-on support to students who need it most.”
One in five accepted students never arrive on campus due to challenges navigating a maze of paperwork and financial aid requirements. Recent research, however, has shown that chatbots can reduce so-called “summer melt” -- whereby students simply lose interest and motivation to go to college -- by more than 20 percent. Since the launch of PAL, 80 per cent of SLC students have already opted in to use the chatbot, with a total of 3000 questions asked in the first month alone.
“All too often, an enrollment process designed to help students winds up creating barriers -- in the form of paperwork and deadlines -- to matriculation,” said Drew Magliozzi, Co-Founder and CEO of AdmitHub. “Chatbots can simplify admissions for students who may not have support or expertise to navigate the process.”
AdmitHub’s popular conversational AI solutions are used by a cross-section of higher education institutions across North America to provide on-demand student assistance via text message and through Facebook Messenger, answering questions in real time and connecting students to appropriate advisors and resources.