Led an award-winning re-modelling of a juniversity Counselling Team and created a new team to enhance student retention

I led a piece of change management to re-model the Counselling Team at a university and created a new team to significantly enhance the university's retention of students.  These projects led to the university (Northumbria University) winning the Times Higher Education award for UK's most "Outstanding Student Services Team"

The folowing is an extract from the report from judging panel (http://digital.timeshighereducation.co.uk/THEAWARDSWINNERS2015/index.html):

Northumbria University’s winning entry centred on three flagship initiatives described by the judges as “strong examples of excellence”. With demand for counselling and mental health services growing – some 1,000 Northumbria students accessed support in 2012-13 – the university overhauled its provision to cut waiting times, prioritise urgent cases and improve student well-being. Thanks to a remodelled service team, year-on-year waiting times fell by 9 per cent, despite a 25 per cent increase in students registering for support via a new online process.

Waits for counselling were reduced from 16 to nine days, with all enquiries receiving a response within one working day and priority cases fast-tracked for immediate action. Students are now also directed to a range of services, such as exam stress advice and sports services, which freed up time for extra face-to-face counselling when required.

A new university-wide process to reduce student dropout rates was also lauded by judges, who were impressed by the one-to-one support for students considering changing course or leaving.

Nearly 1,500 students were helped in the scheme’s first eight months, with 93 per cent of students who were unsure about their course staying at the university, saving around £740,000 in tuition fee income for Northumbria.

“It is great to see this strong commitment to quality in the heartland of student services and support,” the judges said.

Levi Pay