Finding the Ideal Strategic Partner – Best Practice
(Time + date during conference TBA)
Higher education has historically been reluctant to consider partnerships, due in part to a belief that all academic and administrative service needs are unique to an institution. Recent enrollment and revenue challenges have made higher education leaders more open to opportunities in strategic partnerships. But what does that process look like? And how can leaders engage others to gain support?
Richard Hannmann, CFO of Excelsior University, will join rpk’s Rick Staisloff to share a case study around Excelsior University’s recent proactive strategic partnership journey in support of its growth strategy.
Attendees will learn:
- The range of partnership options available to institutions
- The “go/no go” milestones associated with partnership consideration
- Common due diligence steps
- Common pitfalls to be avoided
- How to engage around the partnership question with boards, senior team members, and ultimately faculty and staff
Richard Staisloff is the founder and Senior Partner of rpk GROUP, a leading national consulting firm supporting colleges, universities, and other non-profits with their growth and reallocation strategies. rpk GROUP emerged from two decades of leadership positions in the higher education sector, where Mr. Staisloff developed his expertise in finance and higher education from the perspective of public and private, two- and four-year institutions, higher education commissions, and State legislatures.
Richard Hannmann has spent four decades supporting organizations as a certified public accountant, certified information systems auditor, and certified government financial manager. He currently serves as the Chief Financial Officer for Excelsior University. Prior to that, Richard served as a partner at KPMG.
Higher Education has historically been reluctant to engage in strategic partnerships, based in large part on a mistaken belief that all programs and services must be directly delivered by an institution in service to a unique mission, culture and student population. That resistance is beginning to erode, however, as institutions recognize the potential for both cost savings and expansion of programs and services under strategic partnership models.
Join us on April 19 as rpk’s Founder Rick Staisloff discussions the shift toward strategic partnerships with John MacIntosh, Managing Partner at SeaChange. SeaChange helps nonprofits apply quantitative approaches to current challenges – including grant-making in support of mergers and sustained collaboration.
Rick and John will engage around these key topics:
- Where does higher education’s historic reluctance to consider strategic partnerships come from, and what’s driving the current openness to these partnerships?
- What are some common factors behind successful partnerships, and what pitfalls should be avoided?
- How might leadership begin a conversation around strategic partnerships with their senior teams and boards?
Across all of these topics, John and Rick will share from rpk’s and SeaChange’s use cases in supporting institutions with a move toward strategic partnerships.
Higher Education’s Shift to Strategic Finance
We’re excited for our next Webinar Wednesday installment on November 9th at 1 p.m. ET! We’ll be discussing the application of a strategic finance lens in higher education, and the forces that support and create obstacles to this shift.
Joining us will be one of our great partners in the work:
Matthew Crellin, Program Officer, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation
Matt will share from his deep experience in championing and doing the hard work around strategic finance. We’ll plan to touch upon existing capacity around strategic finance, the levers that impact that capacity, and use cases that encourage our belief that higher education is increasingly adopting strategic finance best practice.
There are great lessons for all of higher education in Matt’s experiences, but this session is especially relevant for institutions and senior higher education leaders who recognize that the time for change is now.
We’re excited about our next Webinar Wednesday installment on June 15!
We’ll be discussing the business model behind student access and success strategies to attract new student populations as the demographic cliff approaches. We will be joined by individuals who are already doing the hard work to address this challenge, including:
– Luke Dowden, Chief Online Learning Officer and Associate Vice Chancellor, Alamo Colleges District
– Cristen Moore, Independent Consultant to HCM Strategists
Cristen and Luke will share from their own experiences designing strategies to attract, enroll and support new student populations through transfer agreements and adult-centered enrollment approaches. This conversation will center these approaches in the current enrollment landscape, discuss the financial sustainability of these approaches, and identify the challenges and best practice in moving to action.
There are great lessons for all of higher education in their experiences, but this session is especially relevant for institutions and senior higher education looking to diversity their enrollment management strategies in response to shifting enrollment patterns.
We’re excited for our next Webinar Wednesday installment on April 20!
We’ll be discussing the critical decisions higher education must make to move toward sustainable business models. And we will be joined by individuals who are doing the hard work, including:
– Charles Ambrose, Chancellor, Henderson State University
– William Reuter, Special Advisor, SUNY Erie, and previous Interim President and Chief Administrative and Financial Officer
Chuck and Bill will share from their own experiences of moving boldly to change the business model. This conversation will touch on approaches to understand current state, best practice in moving to action, and strategies for engaging all stakeholders. There are great lessons for all of higher education in their experiences, but this session is especially relevant for institutions and senior higher education leaders who recognize that the time for change is now.
We’re excited for our next Webinar Wednesday installment on February 16. We’ll be discussing the importance of ensuring alignment between academic program offerings and the institutional business model. We will be joined by two individuals who have done, or are working on doing, exactly that:
– Terry Brown, Vice President of Academic Innovation and Transformation for the American Association of State Colleges and Universities (AASCU)
– Howard Smith, Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs at Pittsburg State University
Terry and Howard will share from their own experiences of understanding academic program return on investment, how the academic portfolio at institutions connects into the overall institutional strategy and business model, and the challenges around culture change that are necessary as program and portfolio management becomes more data-driven. There are great lessons for all of higher education in their experiences, but this session is especially relevant for institutions and higher education leaders wrestling with how to adjust academic offerings in response to changing student needs and shifting enrollment patterns.
We’re excited for our next Webinar Wednesday installment on October 13. We’ll be discussing Transformation at Scale and will be joined by two great leaders in the field:
– Dr. Barbara Bichelmeyer, Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor, University of Kansas
– Dr. Yasmine Ziesler, Chief Academic Officer, Vermont State Colleges System
Barbara and Yasmine will be sharing their stories of transformation across institutions and systems. There are great lessons for all of higher education in their initiatives – especially given that they were achieved in the midst of a pandemic.
Save your spot to learn more about:
– Reallocating existing resources toward new shared future vision.
– Moving toward change at scale.
– Securing faculty and staff buy in for bold change.
– Adopting an ROI approach at your own institution, with an emphasis on moving successfully from post-pandemic survival to recovery to sustainability.
Holistic Advising Redesign: Actionable Strategies for Campus Leaders & Tools to Make the Business Case for Campus Investment
– Donna Desrochers, Senior Associate at rpk GROUP
– Lynn Brabender, Director of Student Success and Supervision at American Association of State College and Universities (AASCU)
Decisions around holistic advising redesign can require significant investment of institutional resources. It is critical for institutional leaders to consider how these investments could impact their institution’s overall business model as they make critical resource allocation decisions.
During this session, the presenters will share key principles for prioritizing and governing new advising initiatives and explain the business model case for these investments.
Attendees will learn about an advising sustainability framework to implement transformative and sustainable change, along with access to other resources and tools—including a financial model—to guide their campus redesign efforts.
Data & Communication-based Strategies for Scaling Adult Learner Enrollment: Lessons from the PACCE Initiative
Community colleges across the country continue to implement innovative strategies to increase the enrollment of adult learners. This session will share some of the adult learner enrollment strategies implemented by the 20 colleges in Achieving the Dream’s Prioritizing Adult Community College Enrollment (PACCE) grant.
During the session, speakers will share how behavioral science can help your college refine your recruitment and enrollment strategies with adult learner needs and strengths at the center of the process. We’ll then share how a return on investment analysis can help prepare for scaling, sustaining, and communicating your adult learner enrollment strategies.
Donna Desrochers, Senior Associate, will present during this session.
The Lingering Impact of HEERF on Campuses and Students
The session will highlight some of the uses of Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF) I, II, and III resources. Panelists will examine the past, present, and future uses of funding. They will also discuss campuses’ experiences with shifting flexibility in the use of funds, on the one hand, and the built-in limitations on the other.
Moderator: Mark Browning, President – Blue Mountain Community College
- Rick Staisloff, Founder and Senior Partner, rpk GROUP
- Amanda Winters, Program Director, Post-Secondary Education, National Governors Association
Moving Toward Sustainable Transformation
Higher education leadership often talks about transformation as a goal. But what does transformation look like when it is achieved? And how can transformation efforts become sustainable?
Laura Casamento, President of Utica University, will join rpk’s Rick Staisloff to share a case study demonstrating the impact of their move to a return on investment lens. That lens, including transformation of the academic portfolio and administrative services, has now been in place 3 years.
Attendees will learn:
– How to apply an ROI lens to academic and administrative operations
– Apply best practice for engaging all institutional stakeholders in the creation of sustainable transformation
– Learn how to adopt a change management approach in moving toward sustainable business models
Richard Staisloff is the founder and Senior Partner of rpk GROUP, a leading national consulting firm supporting institutions with their growth and reallocation strategies. rpk GROUP emerged from two decades of leadership positions in the higher education sector, where Mr. Staisloff developed his expertise in finance and higher education from the perspective of public and private, two- and four-year institutions, higher education commissions, and State legislatures.
Laura Casamento became the ninth president of Utica University in 2016. She is the first woman to serve as president. Prior to joining Utica College in 2004 as VP for Institutional Advancement, she was president and chief operating officer of Herkimer County Trust, an independently owned, state chartered bank located in central New York.
Attaining System Goals Through Strategic Operational Planning
Join one team on their journey from analysis to building a transformative operational plan. This session will lay out and review the goals, steps taken, analysis, the operational plan, and its outcomes. The exposition will be followed by an interview that will dive into the impact of analysis and planning on the institution-wide system.
- Lorenzo Esters, chancellor, Ivy Tech Community College – Indianapolis
- Katie Hagan, principal, rpk GROUP
Transformation at Scale in Higher Education
Rick Staisloff, rpk’s Founder and Senior Partner, will lead this session featuring expert insights on the necessary conditions to achieve transformation at scale. Barbara Bichelmeyer (Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor of University of Kansas) and Yasmine Ziesler (Chief Academic Officer, Vermont State Colleges System) will present use cases showing the challenges faced and solutions created in achieving bold change at an institution and system level. Particular attention will be given to the use of an ROI lens, and how to build capacity for ROI thinking across faculty and staff.
KU’s transformation spanned its academic portfolio and the achievement of new efficiencies, the development of new shared service models for the delivery of administrative services, and a revised resource allocation model. The VSCS story includes the consolidation of all the four year colleges/universities into a single institution.
The session will include small group exercises and Q and A for the speakers.
Building Toward a Post Pandemic Future
Institutions are increasingly considering how to move toward a post-pandemic future. Colleges that have shown the courage to do the hard work around academic and administrative offerings are now well positioned to emerge stronger in 2022. This session will share proven best practice for adopting a sustainable business model, including streamlining academic portfolios, reinvesting in high growth/high revenue programs, creating efficiencies in administrative service delivery, and creating data-informed culture to support change.
Richard Staisloff, rpk GROUP’s founder and Senior Partner, will be joined by Kathleen Hetherington, President Emeritus of Howard Community College in this session, where they also will share a case study demonstrating the use of a strategic finance lens to drive transformation.
Looking for a safe space to talk about strategy with your peers? Interested in solving problems instead of just admiring them?
Then you’ll want to join rpk for its next Office Hours segment on March 16, starting at 5 p.m. ET.
We had a great opening session in January, with engagement from leaders across higher education.
In March, we’ll explore what it takes to move from optimization to transformation. Our team can’t wait to see where the conversation takes us.
Learn more and save your spot here.
Moving Toward Sustainable Business Models for the Academic Portfolio
Society for College and University Planning
Mid-Atlantic 2022 Regional Conference | South Meeting Room | Newcomb Hall
Presented by: Katie Hagan, Principal, rpk GROUP | Nicole Woods, Chief of Staff, University of Virginia | Tammy McHale, Senior Associate Dean for Administration and Planning, University of Virginia
The pandemic has accelerated existing challenges to higher education’s business model. In order to create more sustainable models, we will need to ask hard questions regarding our academic portfolios. Using the University of Virginia’s (UVA) College of Arts and Sciences as an example, we will discuss emerging best practices for creating academic portfolios that serve both an institution’s mission and market. This session will empower you to put this best practice to use and begin the difficult work of analyzing your institution’s academic portfolio.
The rpk team is excited to announce a new webinar on Pandemic Relief Funding: Using HEERF for Strategic Investments. rpk GROUP has engaged with more than 80 institutions as they explore ways to strategically utilize their institutional Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF) allocations. This webinar will be led by Rick Staisloff, Donna Desrochers and Katie Hagan.
Sign up to learn more about:
- The three funding Acts and student & institutional funding streams
- Appropriate and disallowable uses of institutional funds and spending timelines
- A framework for strategically investing in academic and student success within HEERF parameters
- Examples surfaced from the field around best practice for strategic investing of institutional funds.
- Adopting an ROI approach at your own institution, with an emphasis on moving successfully from survival to recovery to sustainability post-pandemic.
Learn more and sign up here.