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Amy Sikes Assistant Director William & Mary.  Who are you serving?  Students  Millennials  Parents  “Helicopter parents”  “Stealth fighter parents”

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Presentation on theme: "Amy Sikes Assistant Director William & Mary.  Who are you serving?  Students  Millennials  Parents  “Helicopter parents”  “Stealth fighter parents”"— Presentation transcript:

1 Amy Sikes Assistant Director William & Mary

2  Who are you serving?  Students  Millennials  Parents  “Helicopter parents”  “Stealth fighter parents”  “Snow plow parents”  Other offices  Community  What do they expect?  How will you provide it?  How can you improve your service?

3  Entitled  Instant gratification  “Fix it for me NOW.”  Used to being protected/sheltered  Time has been managed by others  Often feel highly pressured  Very confident  They’ve never lost – everybody “wins”  Tech-savvy  Do community service

4 Typical characteristics:  Involved  Protective  Concerned  College educated  Demanding  Often tech-savvy

5  “Helicopter parents”  Generally Boomers  Hover over the student  Feel the need to “save” the student from impending harm, real or imagined  Are afraid that any bad experience will damage the student permanently  Want to protect student from the bad things they experienced as children (“latchkey kids”)  Take care of things for the student when the student is “too busy”  Create students who are unable to problem-solve for themselves and who expect college staff to act in loco parentis (as do the parents)

6  “Stealth fighter parents”  Generally Gen-Xers  Choose when and where to attack  Rush in with guns blazing to “save” the student from impending harm, real or imagined  “Not with my child, you don’t!”  Constant surveillance  Take care of things for the student when the student is “too busy”  Create students who are unable to problem-solve for themselves and who expect college staff to act in loco parentis (as do the parents)  Higher expectation of value for their money

7  “Snow Plow parents” – helicopter and stealth fighter combined!  Boomer or Gen-Xers  Clear a path for their student, running over anyone and anything standing in the way  “Help” student with assignments  Write college application essays for the student and/or hire a company to do it  Frequently the wealthier parents  Constant surveillance  Want to protect student from the bad things they experienced as children (“latchkey kids”)  Feel the need to “save” the student from impending harm, real or imagined  Take care of things for the student when the student is “too busy”

8  Consumer mentality  Expect immediate response  Fast action to solve problems  Threaten lawsuits  Pull the student from school/withdraw admission acceptance  Contact the school’s president  Contact a Congressperson  Expect perfection from schools/staff  Judge their own success by the student’s success  Highly protective and proactive  Often circumvent a student’s attempt to solve a problem

9  Providing adequate information and data  Providing transparency  Explaining worsening financial aid situations in the face of this economy  Helping students learn how to become adults  Helping parents understand that it’s time for them to let go  FERPA issues  Learning how to listen and respond sympathetically

10  Strive for transparency  Make website as customer-friendly as possible  “Contact us” button  Interactive forms:  Communicate the same information in multiple ways/places  Website   Newsletters  Blogs  Facebook  Twitter  Text messaging  YouTube  Handouts  Posters  Table tents

11  Provide links to other pertinent departments in your electronic communications  Be aware of “Financial Aid Speak”  Consider having a student or parent focus group  Remember that we all now have shortened attention spans – about 5 minutes  When speaking in person  Use active listening skills  Empathize  Show respect  Recognize that the person may need to tell his/her story  Try to offer at least two solutions to the problem

12 BLOGS  “Web log”  Can be part of your website  Can link to your blog from your website if you can’t post directly on your website  Regular entries on pertinent items  Readers can leave comments  Many options  WordPress  Blogger  Blogspot

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14 Facebook groups and fan pages  Similar to a club  Easy to create and personalize  Easy to send to entire group  Administrators can control membership  Can be difficult to gain members/fans

15 How Financial Aid offices can use FB  Create a group or fan page  Add links to the “about/info” page  Website  Deadlines  Events  Forms  Financial literacy  Promote via lists, posters, table tents  Can repeat posts for additional attention

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18 Twitter  Short info blasts of up to 140 characters  Web links  Deadlines  Event announcements  Financial literacy info  Items appear user’s profile page  # items can “go viral”  Can repeat tweets for additional attention  Can be hard to gain members

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20 YouTube  Search on “financial aid” for examples  Can create and upload explanatory videos  Financial aid basics   FAFSA filing  Importance of deadlines  How to complete forms  Financial literacy sessions

21  Feel free to contact me!  Amy Sikes  


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