Following a short break, Teresa Wong, Director of Admissions and Development at American International School Hong Kong, gave a recap of the recent course she took on Design Thinking and how she has used that in implementing OpenApply at AISHK.
Aimee Gruber, Senior Director of Outreach and Business Development at The Enrollment Management Association, spoke on the changing trends in enrolment management and what admissions and the leadership team need to understand to effectively manage enrolment at their school.
Katie Rigney-Zimmermann, Director of Admissions & Marketing at Saigon South International School, discussed the role of data in admissions and the dangers of relying entirely on quantitative data and disregarding qualitative data. Katie encouraged attendees to make greater use of storytelling and qualitative “thick” data to communicate about the state of enrolment with the leadership team.
After lunch, Linda Belonje shared her strategies for creating a marketing plan for an international school. Linda went through 10 steps to creating an effective plan, but she also reminded us with her last step that no matter how well you plan, reality will always be a little different. Be patient and consistent and all will go well.
Participants then had the chance to break into smaller discussion groups to share their experiences and best practices during unconference facilitated by Katie Rigney-Zimmermann. Popular topics covered included: enrolment planning, onboarding new families, managing caps, and working with challenging families.
Maxine Driscoll, Founding Head of School at Australian International School Phnom Penh, wrapped up the day with a fun activity to show the group’s “collective genius”. Each person wrote three things they learned at the conference on three post-its, and then the post-its were combined to show the similarities and differences of what was learned. Maxine also introduced the importance of 21st Century Education and the skills necessary to be future ready for the changing international school landscape.