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Past Projects

Norwich University Bachelor's Degree Completion Program (2011)

Norwich University’s School of Graduate and Continuing Studies (SGCS) norwich logo(online.norwich.edu) has received persistent and strong requests from the US Department of Defense and Army Special Operations Command to provide a bachelor’s degree completion program. The opportunity appears to offer robust potential for enrollment—as well as an extraordinary challenge to SGCS: how to manage leads, admissions, enrollment, and retention among a highly mobile, undergraduate population. SGCS requested that Hezel Associates conduct an analysis of the opportunity, validate or refute the assumptions leading to the business projections, offer recommendations about the management of admissions, and, ultimately, provide insights that might lead to adaptations in the long-term management of graduate lead generation and enrollments.

This research specifically focused on the Bachelor of Science in Strategic Studies and Defense Analysis (BSSSDA) degree completion program and is based on SGCS staff input provided from April to May 2011 as well as public domain market information. To inform the development of the degree completion program as a part of the larger University strategic planning effort, operational issues needed investigation: (1) how to best manage admissions processes to maximize market opportunity, (2) what admissions processes should be developed internally versus outsourced, and (3) what mix of internal infrastructure and outsourced services optimizes the University’s desired internal capability. Hezel Associates conducted both informal interviews with Norwich University staff members as well as web-based market research in order to provide the University with an in-depth understanding of the challenges they faced. Our report incorporated our findings, analysis, and recommendations.

With the information Hezel Associates was able to provide Norwich University with the data and knowledge required to take steps toward making the BSSSDA fully functional. Norwich University was able to launch the Bachelor of Science in Strategic Studies and Defense Analysis (BSSSDA) degree completion program in 2012 and is specially designed for active duty, Reserve and National Guard soldiers, sailors, airmen, and Marines assigned to or retired from one of the subordinate commands within the U.S. Special Operations Command. The program was ranked #26 of 213 schools, or in the top 15% in 2013 by US News & World Report. This ranking takes into account these areas: faculty credentials and training; student engagement and assessment; student services and technology.