This week, we spoke with Kathy Rose at CollegeCommunityCareer about how they're using texting with high school and college students enrolled in a college success program. CollegeCommunityCareer helps low-income, first generation high school students enroll in a four-year college and graduate with a bachelor's degree. Read the Q&A below!
Signal Vine: What was the problem or challenge that led you to seek a texting solution?
CollegeCommunityCareer: Using personal employees' phones. When employees pursued other jobs, they took all of a student's information with them. Signal Vine allows employees to connect with students using consistent phone numbers throughout the time they are with our organization.
SV: What are your goals for improving communications with students?
CCC: Consistency - we stay with students for almost 7 years, so it's important to have consistent phone numbers that students can use to communicate with us the whole time.
SV: How do you collect participants' phone numbers/consent?
CCC: Each time they attend class, they check their cell phone numbers on the sign-in roster.
SV: Who on your staff responds to text messages, and how often do they check their inbox?
CCC: Everyone on our staff is able to check messages and respond. We set up a schedule and have someone check it at least once a day - more if we've recently sent out a program message.
SV: What are some examples of common questions students ask via text?
CCC: How do I... (contact financial aid, get information about admissions, etc.); I want to participate in a field trip or program, or I can't come to class today because... (sick, dr.appointment etc.).
SV: How has texting impacted the student/staff relationship?
CCC: Students engage more with this platform and we can all check on the progress of a student.
SV: What lessons have you learned from your texting program?
CCC: Too many texts in a row can make students not respond as well. The conditional questions have great responses; check messages often.
Thanks, Kathy and CommunityCollegeCareer! Happy texting.