Page 134 - Security Today, July/August 2018
P. 134

Campuses must prepare for the next generation of students By Jeff Meier
The next generation of students is making its way onto college campuses. As millennials trade in their caps and gowns for a spot in the workforce, Gen Z is shopping for dorm room essentials. When it comes to meeting the needs of these fresh faces, colleges and universities may need to look at new ways to upgrade their campus experience.
One of the biggest issues facing Gen Z today is the high cost of col- lege tuition. Over the last decade, in-state tuition has increased by 65 percent while out-of-state prices have soared by 55 percent. These ris- ing costs coupled with an aversion to debt have left many prospective students wondering which colleges are worth the investment. Nearly seven out of 10 high school students are concerned about taking out college loans.
While the high cost of college tuition is certainly a legitimate issue, it’s not one that most decision makers on campus can control. One thing they can do to calm the concerns of this tech-savvy generation is exceed their expectations when it comes to technology. After all, more than 90 percent of these students consider technology an important part of developing creativity and preparing for potential careers.
Although plenty of institutions have made an effort to enhance their educational tools and technologies through smartboards, digital text- books and online courses, few have devoted similar attention toward the overall student experience—including the campus ID. A student’s
campus ID is the central tool to deliver a great student experience through technology.
State-of-the-art, all-in-one ID cards can enable everything from access control, to campus payments and transportation. It can also exceed Gen Z expectations by catering to their desire for individual- ized experiences, while complimenting and even enhancing university branding initiatives. These innovations along with speeding up the issuance process, can help cultivate an experience that will win over incoming freshmen.
At its core, a campus ID card serves as a way to get around campus and provides access to campus buildings and services. With just a little bit of personalization, it can do so much more. Eager to celebrate their individuality, Gen Z students are often on the lookout for ways to showcase their interests and lifestyles. Campus ID cards offer an opportunity to do just that.
Pave the way for personalization by investing in card issuance soft- ware that can offer much more than a campus ID number and barcode. Providing extra options—such as a fraternity or sorority membership, sports team logo, or a specific school or academic program—can help personalize the student experience to reflect their unique interests and personality. These cards can also enhance overall university branding

   132   133   134   135   136