30 years of Enrollment Success

2018 marks the 30th year of the National Small College Enrollment Conference!

That's 30 years of training, networking and better admissions, enrollment and retention. Thirty years of inspiring the future for small colleges and universities nationwide.

Louisville - An entirely different type of Southern

Keynote Address

"Small Fish in Rough Seas: How Smaller Institutions can Survive and Thrive"

Presented by Ken Steele
Chief Futurist at Eduvation

A fast-paced, eye-opening and entertaining look at the current landscape of higher ed enrollment management, and specifically the challenges and opportunities for small and mid-sized colleges. Voracious online competitors are turning local and regional marketplaces into global ones, even while some local applicant pools are drying up. Compared to flagship and powerhouse online brands, smaller institutions can feel hopelessly outmatched, particularly in national or international waters. The best course of action for smaller players is often to swim against the current, to identify a unique niche not already dominated by bigger competitors, and to position themselves in a way that stands out and attracts attention. Higher ed brand strategist Ken Steele will share some key trends, insights, best practices, and advice to guide our efforts in enrolment management. (Be sure to bring your smartphone, tablet or laptop to this session so you can share your voice in real-time online polling!)

More than 25,000 higher education professionals across Canada and the US have come to rely on Ken Steele as a definitive source of breaking news, bright ideas and insight into student trends, technological innovation, strategic planning, branding and recruitment marketing.  He has consulted with hundreds of colleges and universities, helping them interpret market research, understand their competitive context, and develop distinctive institutional strategies and brand positions.

Ken’s unique perspective has been shaped by award-winning careers spanning 4 decades, first as a humanities computing researcher and Shakespeare instructor, then an IT consultant, ad agency creative director, and ultimately a higher education market research analyst and brand consultant. In 2003, he conceived and co-founded Academica Group, a market research firm doing some of the largest postsecondary consumer surveys in the world.  Ken left Academica in 2012 to focus on his public speaking and facilitation work under the new name Eduvation.

Session Highlights


European charm meets southern hospitality at Louisville’s luxurious Seelbach Hilton. Named “The Best Hotel in Kentucky” by Business Insider, this historic landmark hotel with modern amenities and beautifully appointed rooms has been a frequent movie set that also attracts celebrities of all kinds including guest Billy Joel who spontaneously sang his hits for delighted patrons at the Old Seelbach Bar.

After you register for the conference you will be provided a link through which you may secure a room at the discounted rate of $174.