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SURVIVAL OF THE FITTEST? THE REBRANDING OF WEST VIRGINIA HIGHER EDUCATION James M. Owston American Association University Administrators 2008 Assembly.

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Presentation on theme: "SURVIVAL OF THE FITTEST? THE REBRANDING OF WEST VIRGINIA HIGHER EDUCATION James M. Owston American Association University Administrators 2008 Assembly."— Presentation transcript:

1 SURVIVAL OF THE FITTEST? THE REBRANDING OF WEST VIRGINIA HIGHER EDUCATION James M. Owston American Association University Administrators 2008 Assembly

2 Rebrandings By percentage RankState Percentage Rebranded 1West Virginia56.25% 2Kentucky49.15% 3Georgia42.86% 4Minnesota39.29% 5New Hampshire32.00% 6Connecticut31.71% 7Montana28.57% 8Missouri28.21% 9Oregon25.58% 10Maryland25.45%

3 College-to-University By percentage RankState Percentage of University Rebranded Schools 1West Virginia25.00% 2Georgia20.78% 3Idaho20.00% 4Missouri16.67% 5Oklahoma12.82% 6New Jersey10.64% 7Kentucky10.17% 8Oregon9.30% 9New Hampshire8.00% 10Ohio7.34%

4 Populations of the study 11 West Virginia Institutions 51 Institutions in and surrounding Appalachia 103 Institutions nationwide ( ) 6 Institutions using a similar brand name - Allegheny

5 Method Mixed method approach Quantitative Qualitative Historical Naturalistic observation Interviews Postmodern theoretical perspective Atypical dissertation model

6 Research Questions & Results Question 1: What factors precipitated the college-to-university change? Reflect current status Define future mission Institutional prestige

7 Research Questions & Results Question 2: What was the administrations justification for the university designation? The offering of graduate degrees The university model of structure The international implications of College

8 Research Questions & Results Question 3: What was the institutions strategy for the rebranding process? Strategic planning Instituting a university structure The choice of name Minor-simple 53% Minor-complex 34% Major 13% Time commitment – average 22 months

9 Research Questions & Results Question 4: What procedures did administration use to implement the change? Kaikati & Kaikati (2003) – 6 strategies Institutional colors and mascots Funding

10 Research Questions & Results Question 5: What influence did regulatory bodies have upon the change? Accrediting bodies had little influence Legislature – Influenced public institutions Compared to other states – limited in scope

11 Research Questions & Results Question 6: What were reactions of stakeholders to the change? Numerous stakeholder groups Alumni most vocal stakeholder group Combined stakeholder efforts

12 Research Questions & Results Question 7: How did senior administrators perceive the success of the change? 139 Points 90 Points 72 Points 35 Points 32 Points 17 Points Basis of the Success of Change Areas Points Clarified Identity Enhanced Reputation Enrollment & Recruiting New Programs International Issues All others

13 Research Questions & Results Question 7: How did senior administrators perceive the success of the change? Koku (1997) found no significance in enrollment trends with strategic name changes 103 College-to-University changed institutions – significance, but a negative correlation.

14 Research Questions & Results Question 8: Did the change produce any indicators of increased prestige? Carnegie Classification Increase in graduate programs Undergraduate selectivity Tuition – Chivas Regal effect

15 Research Questions & Results Question 9: What suggestions did administrators provide upon revisiting the change? Have a good reason to change 147 points Have a defendable name that relates to the institutional mission 141 points Address stakeholder issues 81 points

16 Research Questions & Results Question 10: What methods can institutions use to retain ownership of a brand? Longevity of brand use Excellent academic reputation Succinct mission Identify fallacious arguments from contenders Protect your brand at all costs

17 SURVIVAL OF THE FITTEST? THE REBRANDING OF WEST VIRGINIA HIGHER EDUCATION James M. Owston


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