With so much energy spent on managing and admitting Chinese applicants, it’s easy to forget that the China admissions process doesn’t end on decision day. Managing yield still matters.
Here’re 5 suggestions for managing your yield and having Chinese applicants to say “yes” to you.
1. Have enrolled Chinese students monitor Chinese message boards
Chinese parents pay close attention to reputation when they’re looking at North American schools. Your school’s reputation most likely grows and changes on China’s Bulletin Board Systems (BBS). BBS are online message boards where people share admissions experiences and information about schools they are considering. Here’s our lowdown on Chinese message boards for more information about the BBS world.
Chinese students who already attend your school are a great resource for monitoring these communities and keeping you aware of your institution’s image. No suspect behavior is needed, but you should be generally aware of your school’s standing or even be an active member online.
Also, I’d be willing to bet that your Chinese students would love hearing you tell them, “I need you. Please help me.”
Finding School is a major site for the boarding school level.
2. Consider small scholarships (~$500)
Money talks and a small token of appreciation goes a long way in China. Any amount of financial assistance might give you the edge over other schools. Of course, this is a complicated decision and one that isn’t right for every school.
3. Visa assistance
Proactive thinking ahead on this one. As The Association of Boarding Schools (TABS) explains on its visa page, applicants must complete I-20 form prior to applying for an US F-1 visa.
Does your admittance letter include an I-20 form or a link to one? What can you do to speed up the visa process for students? If you can’t speed it up, what can you do to show accepted applicants that you care about them?
- UC Berkeley has a great FAQ page about the I-20 process
- UC Riverside has a great I-20 info page as well
4. Strong relationships
Strong relationships that you hopefully have in China are crucial to yield management. China admissions travel goes a long way towards building these strong relationships. Engage with trusted partners if and when you come to China.
Think about how any and all of your people assets can respectfully encourage students/families to say “yes!” Native Chinese alumni. Chinese that have visited your campus. Current Chinese students’ networks. Your China connection can easily be expanded if you think the right way.
5. Engage the applicants you want most
Be clear on who your “rock-stars” are and follow up with them. If you interviewed them during the admissions season, use the information you learned from the interview to connect.
China-based events are a great way to both develop/use strong relationships and engage with the applicants you want.
— Mt. Holyoke College (@mtholyoke) April 17, 2015
Hopefully this quick list has got you thinking about how to improve your China admissions yield process. The two overall themes are thinking ahead and showing that you care. Chinese parents and students do pick up on and appreciate those two acts.
Let me hear what you think in the comment section below! Disagreements, personal stories, additions to the list, and more, are all welcomed!