Higher Ed

How to Credential Durable Skills

Parchment Staff  •  Mar 26, 2024  •  Podcast
Parchment Podcast Credentials Unscripted Episode 10

Do we adequately measure the totality of the college experience? How do we begin to measure the experiences of learners outside of the classroom? In this episode, we speak with Rob Buelow of Vector Solutions to discuss how universities can better engage students and employers by focusing on “durable skills” that better describe the value of the college experience.

Studies/Research cited in the episode:
The number of teens considering a four-year degree went from 71% in 2020 to 51% in 2022.

More Americans rank a Google internship over a Harvard degree.

Only 26% of U.S. adults who have experienced higher education strongly agree their coursework is relevant to their work and day-to-day life.


Matthew Sterenberg (00:01.26)

Alright, I am here with Rob Buelow, Vice President and General Manager of Education at Vector Solutions. Rob, how are you?


Rob Buelow (00:12.086)

I am glad to be here, Matt. How are you?


Matthew Sterenberg (00:12.462)

I’m doing good. So I guess a good place to start would be tell us a little bit about your role and about vector solutions.


Rob Buelow (00:23.126)

Yeah, for sure. So a little about me. I am passionate about the intersection between technology, education, and social impact. My academic training is in public health. I’ve spent the last 19 years working on or with colleges and universities. 12 of those have been in ed tech companies like Vector Solutions, where we’re working with 2000 colleges and universities and 7 ,000 K -12 schools and districts. That’s about half.

of all of the education institutions in the country. And as the general manager of our education sector, I’m responsible for making sure that all the functional areas of our company are rowing towards our mission of making schools safer, smarter, and better. And the impact that we’re able to make is incredible at that scale. At Higher Ed alone, we’re reaching 10 million students, staff, and faculty every year with evidence -based digital trainings on topics like sexual assault,

alcohol and substance misuse, harassment, discrimination, career readiness, mental wellbeing, belonging, hazing. These are issues that impact lives. And the data that we’re providing back to schools on the efficacy of these programs and the insights on where they should focus more resources truly help them strengthen both their mission and their overall institutional effectiveness. And that’s really where I’ve been most interested the last few years, that connection between.

mission alignment and student success. I’m sure everybody listening knows there’s been a ton of turbulence in academia of late, both on issues of campus safety and wellbeing, as well as the overall health, the business of higher education and whether college is worth it anymore. And to be clear, for the record, I am a firm believer that it is worth it, but not without some real transformation around who we are, what we do and why it matters.


Matthew Sterenberg (02:13.006)

So that’s a really good way to kind of set the table, right? I think I’m pro college too, right? You’re pro college. I think the majority of people that went to college are pro college, right? And the funny thing when you and I spoke earlier, we’re talking about like, well, why are we pro college? You know, it’s expensive. It’s a big time commitment. And what is it about?

college, the unique experience of college that makes it valuable, right? It’s not just the actual in -classroom learning. And that’s what’s really interesting to me about Vector Solutions. Because as you highlighted, we’ve got all these challenges in higher ed. How do you help me define the college experience and the work that all of you are doing?

to encompass all that it means to go to college, graduate, and then I want you to connect it to the missional aspect of what a university or a college needs to do.


Rob Buelow (03:26.326)

Yeah, for sure. Well, I mean, looking at the title of this podcast, we’re talking about durable skills. And so there’s a word in there, durable, that I’m going to focus on. And there’s a word you said, Matthew, of experience. I think those are two things that are part and parcel of each other. I think it is the experience of college that makes it durable in the face of unprecedented challenges, declining enrollment.

rising costs, increased competition, questions of value and relevance. As we’ve got more and more disruption happening and more and more competition, even within the academy of institutions competing against themselves for a now dwindling pool of students, the way that schools need to position the differentiated value of the product that they are offering, it’s not just the diploma.

the credential, it is the experience. We are not just shaping minds and building skills. We are shaping characters and creating conscientious global citizens. That’s the mission of college and that’s what makes me really excited and that’s what’s gonna make higher education never go away. But it is that mission, it is that experience that we need to lean into more, especially as we start talking about things like pathways to getting the jobs that students want today.


Matthew Sterenberg (04:55.15)

So I like the way you framed it up in terms of the durability of higher education. But what you’re talking about is traditionally known as soft skills, which is kind of a bad term because, I don’t know, it’s really hard to define. And by nature, the word soft skills kind of makes it seem like we are unable to define it.

make sense? Like, well, it’s not like you actually know this thing that has the right answer. But so tell me the skills and competencies that we should be focused on that we’re not focused on. What? Why should we be focusing on them? And and what are the ones that we actually need to focus more on?


Rob Buelow (05:49.206)

So if you’ll allow me, Matthew, let me tangent to your question for just a moment. So going back to those macro challenges the industry is facing, the pressure on higher education is tremendous right now. As more and more people question the value and relevance of a college degree, and that’s evidenced in a lot of ways. Enrollment’s been declining since 2010. The percent of…


Matthew Sterenberg (05:50.126)

Go off Rob.


Rob Buelow (06:16.054)

High school students considering a bachelor’s degree went from 71 % in 2020 to 51 % in 2022, not going to college on TikTok has millions of views. More Americans are seeing value in a Google internship over a Harvard degree. In 2023, more colleges than ever before in the history of higher education shuttered their doors. And for those that are still coming to college, only 26.

percent of US adults who have experienced higher education strongly agree that their coursework’s relevant to their work and day -to -day life. So from a business lens, our customers, our students, are dissatisfied with the product we are selling, a degree. And there’s a huge push to align the curricula of degree programs to practical job skills. And there’s growing momentum around…

career readiness training, around work -based learning, internships and apprenticeships and other co -curricular opportunities to provide students with experiences that are gonna make them more employable. And I am all for that, establishing technical skills, experiential learning. But one of the tragic downsides of this predicament that we’re in in higher education is that liberal arts and humanities programs are increasingly on the chopping block as colleges.

are looking for ways to balance their budgets. So my story, I got my bachelor of arts in psychology at Penn State. And to be honest, I’ve never really thought about my job and career after college until probably my junior year. I wasn’t interested in counseling, psychology or research. So I started taking classes in industrial organizational psychology, thinking that that sounded good. That would make me a little bit more employable, but I had no idea what I wanted to do.

until I took Intro to Women’s Studies. That class changed the trajectory of my life, and I never would have taken it if I didn’t have the elective credits of being a liberal arts major. I ended up getting involved in a men’s peer education program focused on sexual assault prevention, and for the first time in my life, I found something I was passionate about. I became a leader of the group, managed meeting agendas and budgets, did a ton of public speaking, and I realize now,


Rob Buelow (08:40.118)

I was building skills like interpersonal communication, empathy, critical and analytical thinking, cultural competence. These are often dubbed soft skills, but I much more prefer human skills or durable skills. And they’re a big focus for us at Vector Solutions. So happy to talk more about how we’re honing in on those skills and the credentials demonstrating those skills. But that’s how I think about what…

college can do. That’s what I think about when I think about the non -technical, non -specifically vocation related skills.


Matthew Sterenberg (09:18.222)

Yeah, I wonder if there is a just the cost of college has risen exponentially. And I wonder if that has just created this pressure for you have to know what you’re going to do. You have to have this exact pathway and has been at the detriment of liberal arts, right? Of seeing college as this four to, you know, six years where you can

discover what you want to do, kind of slowly roll your way to figuring out who you are and the types of things you want to invest in. But because the cost of college is so great, we have this pressure to know exactly how it’s going to translate and pay itself back basically. And I think that’s a real tragedy because I had a similar story to you, right? I was like undeclared for several years, really didn’t know what I wanted to do. But.

That’s kind of part of the experience, right? Like that’s part of the value is the figuring out. And I think we’ve changed it to the value is more transactional, which I understand given the cost of college, right? Like, am I going to pay, you know, $300 ,000 to be making, you know, $40 ,000 out of college? That’s a hard trade off for a lot of people, right? So I get it, but.

I think that’s a real shame. But yeah, tell us about the work that you’re doing with vector solutions and the credentials and the things that you’re focused on.


Rob Buelow (10:55.83)

Yeah, yeah, no doubt. It is a shame, as you’re saying, Matthew, that we are commoditizing the experience, that we are making college much more transactional and look like the macro environment is not helping us right now. So the growing trend of employers dropping the requirement of a college degree for entry level jobs.

The number of non -degree credentials is fast approaching the number of bachelor degrees conferred every year. And yes, skills in AI and big data are getting a lot of buzz and a lot of focus, but it’s durable skills that employers continue citing as some of the most important in prospective hires. So we’re talking about leadership.

We’re talking about adaptability and resilience. We’re talking about creative and analytical thinking, empathy, curiosity, cultural awareness, emotional IQ. The problem is twofold. Hiring managers don’t know how to assess these skills, and job candidates, or students, don’t know how to articulate them. I haven’t yet heard of a perfect interview question that gives…

a fulsome perspective on the durable skills that’s going to make someone an asset to an organization and show their potential for growing into a leader. And by the way, I’m open to emails on the back end of this podcast for suggestions of better interview questions I should be asking. But there are a lot of spaces and places where we’re helping build these durable skills in students, both inside and outside the classroom. But we’re seldom giving.

a student the language to talk about what they learned. And a transcript simply isn’t.


Matthew Sterenberg (12:54.83)

And absent of that, what are we gonna, you know, absent of that, of them really having a clear way to communicate it, what is, like take a job interview, interview for instance, you’re like, everyone’s gonna say, I work hard, I’m, you know, like we, they all just blend together at that point because we don’t have a good way to describe it. So we just rely on someone either describing themselves or that we don’t have, yeah, exactly, yeah.


Rob Buelow (13:20.886)

They have to interpret, right?


And we’re talking about, you know, still developing minds that haven’t in the case of a quote unquote traditional age college student, like they don’t know the work environment and how an employer needs to hear that this skill is valuable. So we’re putting a lot on the student and charging them a lot to not give them a really, really clear and specific value proposition.

for these durable skills, for these human skills, for these quote unquote soft skills. And I think that’s where badges and micro -credentials can add real value. So a rigorously validated micro -credential can clearly demonstrate acquired competencies around digital skills, around durable skills. The metadata that is in a badge or a credential kind of takes that.

interpretation work out of the equation on both sides. The hiring manager can see the criteria that was used to confer this micro -credential, and all of the descriptions of the competencies and skills should make it really clear what this learner, this credential acquirer, got out of that experience.


Matthew Sterenberg (14:44.59)

And I think it’s a really cool way to, for an institution to prioritize what they care about from a missional perspective. So, you know, we all sense this and we’ve all done hiring where, Hey, students from this college, they just seem like a good fit. You know, they seem to have a greater ability to be, uh,

to listen, to be a public speaker, to manage people. Like, oh, that college really churns out people that feel like they’re a really good fit for our organization. But it’s hard to define, right? We’re just kind of making correlations rather than actually having kind of the data or the way to describe it. And this actually allows an institution to say, here’s what we care about. Here’s kind of the proof points. Here are the actual kind of learning outcomes for it.

And to differentiate itself from other institutions, right? Here’s what a Grand Valley State University student, here’s like kind of the ethos of what we’re trying to instill in them versus a Calvin college or Calvin university student, that type of thing. So to plug my own institution that I went to, but there needs to be differences, right? And I think it’s cool for an institution to be able to focus on the things that, that they want their students to be because branding and higher ed.

is critical, right? They’re all trying to differentiate themselves. Here’s what your experience will look like. Here’s what we care about. And I think this further enables an institution to do that.


Rob Buelow (16:23.446)

I think there’s two things that we’ll probably keep talking about in the next few minutes. So one is just the more proximal preparation for careers. And two is the way that student affairs and these sort of unlikely spaces and places are providing value that both today’s learners want and tomorrow’s employers need.

Um, so, you know, starting with the, the first one, it goes back to the disruption and the competition facing higher ed. And it’s not just against other institutions. It’s the Google career certificates. It’s Amazon’s machine learning university. These signify pathways to in -demand high paying jobs for a fraction of the cost of a college degree. But as we talked about really early on what these programs don’t do.

is the thing that makes higher education uniquely differentiated. Yes, we have classroom and co -curricular offerings that expand knowledge and skills, but it is that experience that’s not just shaping minds, but shaping characters. And so I think our call to action as an industry is we need to start being a lot more explicit about the many ways that we’re investing in the acquisition of technical…

vocational and durable skills, both inside and outside the classroom. And that’s been a part of our focus at Vector Solutions. We recently released a student training called Leadership and Career Readiness. So this includes modules covering everything from communication and vision to servant leadership and empathy to modeling good behaviors and effective decision making. And the title of the course and the corresponding

Credential make it abundantly clear what the value and the outcome is and we’re seeing schools use these modules and first -year experience programs or practicum seminars so that’s a that’s a proximal example of an outside the classroom opportunity to use technology to help provision these schools to help provide the credential and the talking points to You know differentiate a student in the hiring pool, but there are so many more


Rob Buelow (18:47.718)

programs and activities provided to students that are simply not being curricularized or positioned as skill building opportunities. So you mentioned Calvin University, you went there for your undergrad, got your master’s at Northwestern, right? I’m certain you had to participate in prevention and compliance trainings on topics related to safety, wellbeing, and inclusion. Tell me I’m wrong, but I’m almost certain that that was part of your experience, yeah?


Matthew Sterenberg (19:14.222)

Yes, yeah.


Rob Buelow (19:17.814)

You loved them. They were great. Yes, I hear the enthusiasm. So many of our customers are using these programs pre -matriculation. So it’s literally one of the first engagements a student has with their school. And if we position these as just check the box requirements, that’s what they’re going to be for students. Seems like you might have had that.


Matthew Sterenberg (19:20.174)



Rob Buelow (19:42.902)

hey Matthew, you’re required to go through this training and you better do it or you can’t register for classes. And if that’s how we’re positioning it, that’s how it’s gonna be received. There’s not gonna be enthusiasm and there’s certainly not gonna be a bigger, broader connection. Even if we talk about the investment that my school’s making in my wellbeing on campus, that’s still, that positioning has a shelf life of the two to four to six years that someone’s spending on our physical institution.

But think about a program like sexual assault prevention. When you’re talking about consent or bystander intervention, what you’re really talking about is interpersonal communication, ethical decision -making, empathy. When you talk about promoting mental wellbeing, we know that that is a huge, like top presidential priority for colleges and universities. What you’re talking about…

If you’re really trying to get ahead of these issues is adaptability, self -management skills, resilience. Diversity and inclusion programs are about intercultural fluency, creating communities where everyone feels like they belong. I think everyone’s probably starting to make the connections here, right? Those are really powerful skills, but very few schools are explicitly making that connection to their learners. And for many of them,

They’re reaching almost all of their students with these programs. So Student Affairs is really an unsung hero in the provisioning of some of the most important durable skills that are gonna make students successful in their careers and communities. And you’re damn right, Matthew, it is branding that matters in how we’re telling that story.


Matthew Sterenberg (21:23.63)

Yeah, and you and I talked about this earlier too, which is like, think about all of the classes you took in college, university, how much of the actual information do you remember or do you use? Right. And so going back to your original point, which is like, how do we have this struggle in higher ed? We’ve it’s this transaction. People want to get something back, want to figure out exactly what.

I’m going to get out of going to college and we have all these other credentialing, you know, avenues popping up, different types of pathways. But the durability and the reason I love when you say durable skills is because the premise is, well, can’t I just get a certificate outside of college and get this next job? Well, that might be a job I want next year.

What’s the work that I want to do 10 years, 15 years? Like the idea that someone will know exactly what they want to do will never change and shift. Yes, having a pathway, knowing exactly where you want to end up is great, but that to me is a luxury, right? Of course, it’s better not to waste time taking classes you won’t need towards your degree. Pathways are important and there’s a lot of research that suggests like for community college students like…

Hey, what classes do you need to take to get to four years so that you can graduate on time? Like all of that is great. But the same point, I think it’s a fallacy that we can just say, hey, what’s that next job you want? What’s the quickest path to get there? The durable skills will help me no matter what I do, right? If I want to change and shift, right? They’re going to stick with me. And that to me is really the critical element here, right? We’re so intent on.

What’s the pathway? And we’re not thinking actually long -term. We’re thinking about the next stop in the journey and the durability piece really sticks with me because it’s like, no, what’s the thing I can take with me no matter where I go. You did hit on a few things. The economy and the utility of these types of credentials, right? How does a learner describe, you know, what they know, how well they know it.


Matthew Sterenberg (23:46.542)

And then for employers to actually ask for this information, all of that stuff. So it’s a chicken and the egg problem, Rob. Right. How do we actually, let’s say we’re, you’re doing the good work of, you know, helping student affairs credential and, and hopefully, you know, learners have a better idea of, of what they’ve, they’ve learned and, and the development that they’ve, that they’ve gone through. But how do we actually begin?

to get people to care, like how do we actually make this a better economy for these types of skills? Because I guarantee you, I apply for a job today, they’re not like, send me all of your soft skill credentials. You know what I mean? So like, how do we actually begin to solve this problem where no one’s asking for it at this point? How do we actually go about doing that?


Rob Buelow (24:44.948)

Mmm, man, so much to reflect on what you said, like…


Matthew Sterenberg (24:46.126)

Can you solve this in 30 seconds or less, Rob? No. No.


Rob Buelow (24:52.726)

Can I give you any response in 30 seconds or less, Matthew? Probably not. But back to the durability piece, I want to put a fine point on it’s durability in so many ways, right? It’s durability in the fact that the technical skills might be the foot in the door to the job, but it is these human skills that are going to be the pathway for growth once you get in the door. And I’ll say to the question you’re asking now,

Like the durability is also there in what employers are saying they want in prospective, often entry level hires. You know, you look at the key skills coming out of the World Economic Forum every year, LinkedIn top job skills, right? Like no matter where you look, there is durability in durable skills being on that list, right? And of course, like the other flavors of the day might change to the AI.

to the big data, but these continue to be major hiring criteria priorities for employers. And so, you know, you pan out and you look at the space and like the proliferation of badges and micro credentials. And I agree with you, there is still a real signal to noise disconnect of the amount of

stuff in the system. I almost said gunk in the system and maybe perhaps I should have. But there’s so much in the credential space and so little of it has been sort of the signal that got picked up by the employer to say, yes, that microcredential, that badge has value. I am more likely to hire a student with that criteria.

That’s the nut that we have to crack, but I think higher education is the place to do it because up until pretty recently, that credential that said, yes, that was simply a diploma. And certainly the value of that diploma might have differed based on the institution and the name that was on it, but that was sort of the foot in the door or the door opener for…


Rob Buelow (27:16.912)

for higher education graduates. And so I do feel like, you know, colleges and universities are well positioned as the pipeline to future leaders of our companies, of our country. I think we need to be working really closely with the private sector to talk about what their expectations are, to talk about how they can codify how we

can quantifiably and qualitatively show that what we’re doing is going to make someone more effective, certainly help our learners tell that story. But I do disagree, though, that employers aren’t asking for this. They are, but they’re not looking to a credential yet to be part of the answer. And I think that’s the nut we have to crack.


Matthew Sterenberg (28:11.726)

Yeah. And the way that they’re asking for it is not verifiable in any way, right? Typically it’s like, you might get it through different means. You might have someone do a writing sample or references or something on your resume, but there’s really no verifiable way to get that information. Yeah. And to give kind of credence to what we’re talking about here, like this is, this has been a topic in higher ed. This isn’t like a new thing. This is.

Over the last many years, what have a lot of offices talked about? A comprehensive learner record. We know what the problem is. The problem is partially we really, when you graduate from college, people really don’t have a very good idea of what you know and how well you know it, right? The transcript is an inside baseball document. It doesn’t really communicate a lot about me. And the degree is…

is binary, right? Like either have one or I don’t, it doesn’t really say a whole lot. So the comprehensive learner record, the movement in higher ed is a way to say, how do we actually describe the experience outside of the classroom for the student, right? So many universities have pursued this. It’s, hey, I had a semester abroad, I took this internship, I was involved in these student activities or clubs.

And so gathering that data is always a challenge for institutions, but they’re working hard with student affairs to your point, so that we have all of these credentials or badges potentially that then can roll up into something more comprehensive so that it is easier for students to communicate and easier for someone to consume, right? Because I think that is one of the challenges that we’re going to run into. Whereas if we have, you know, a hundred different types of credentials, it becomes.

kind of lost in the noise, right, of what all these things mean. So I think there is going to be, okay, we credential them, we make it digital, great, we want students to understand them, fantastic. How do we make it just really easy to transfer this information to the parties that are interested in it? And I think that’s gonna continue to be something that’s innovated on.


Rob Buelow (30:05.206)



Rob Buelow (30:26.422)

Yeah, I mean, if you keep the sort of metaphor, we don’t even need to be that abstract about it. We think about our students as customers. We think about this premium product that we’re selling of a diploma and the experience. What do you expect when you pay a lot of money for a product? You expect world -class customer experience.

and customer support. And so I think to the comprehensive learner records and the curricularizing of the fulsome experience, like that’s gotta be the way that we’re recruiting students. That’s gotta be the first thing that we’re talking to them about in orientation programs is how to do college with intention because I hear consistently now that it’s really less about.

where you went and that you went to college, it’s how you went to college. And so how do administrators help shape the way our students are doing college and recognizing that there are these systems and structures of comprehensive learner records that they should be making deposits into regularly and thinking about as the long tail value of what they’re doing in the next four years and.

I know certainly that that was not part of my experience in undergrad or even in early days in graduate school. My first advisor was telling me I should take classes that I was passionate about. And I was passionate about sexual violence prevention, but that wasn’t what I wanted to do as the entirety of my career. And it wasn’t until I got advised, and I’m like, look, Rob, you’re…

going to graduate from the Harvard School of Public Health. People are going to expect that you know how to lead. So tell me about your ability to manage a budget. Have you ever taken a class on that? Do you understand how to work an assets and liabilities spreadsheet? No. That was the advising that I got that finally clicked for me. They’re like, oh, there’s this whole world of skills and competencies that I’m going to be expected to have, and I don’t. So I think the customer experience side of it.


Rob Buelow (32:41.846)

really matters and the support that we get as customers, as students, matters too.


Matthew Sterenberg (32:47.278)

So durable skills, engaging with the Student Affairs Office, thinking about how we can help students communicate their experience, investing in these durable skills, which are really the differentiator of higher ed. Rob, what else should we have talked about that we haven’t talked about yet?


Rob Buelow (33:12.662)

Well, look, I’m gonna do my swan song here, hat tip into all my student affairs colleagues out there and say, here’s the equation that we need to be better at articulating, particularly at the practitioner administrator level of student affairs. Then you come into these roles because you’ve got so much passion for…

the work that you’re doing. And I was once at a conference, it was a student affairs conference, and I was talking about essentially the thing that allows student affairs professionals to persist in the face of really big challenges. And it is that passion, but he went on to say that institutions of higher education have interests. And how do we articulate?

the interests of higher education. So it’s not to say that your boss’s boss’s boss, the president, chancellor, provost of a college or university don’t care about mission, don’t care about the wellbeing of students, staff and faculty, don’t care about safety and communities of belonging. They absolutely do, but what they are held accountable to on paper by trustees, by the general public is…

recruiting students and filling seats, recognizing that’s one of the main value streams of the finances of a university. They want to make students academically successful. They want to engage them in their learning process because they know that’s going to help a student persist. So retention and graduation rates are huge. It costs so much money to refill a seat of a student that left your institution either because they stopped out, dropped out, transferred.

to another school, and then how are we placing students and preparing them for their lives after college? So, okay, that’s the equation of the business of higher education. You think about each of those steps in the student life cycle, and safety, wellbeing, inclusion, student affairs is central at each of those steps in the process.


Rob Buelow (35:30.614)

So think about Gen Z, young people today. They are socially conscious. They are activism oriented. They are making consumer decisions based on their values. That includes the branded jeans that they buy, where they shop for their groceries, and whether or not they go to your college. And so they are looking for you to tell them the ways you are meeting their expectations. We did a survey of graduating high school seniors a few years ago.

Matthew, 83 % of them said that safety, well -being, and inclusion were as important as academic rigor when deciding where they wanted to go to college. So how are schools using their marketing and communications divisions to tell that story to prospective students? And then you get them on campus, and what are the big factors that are causing a student?

to drop out of an institution or transfer to another institution or to do poorly in the classroom. We know that students who experience sexual violence are significantly more likely to leave your institution. Students who misuse or abuse alcohol or substances, significantly more likely to get behind in schoolwork, do more poorly on assignments, consider dropping out, actually leaving your institution. Students that don’t feel like they belong aren’t gonna be…

fully engaged in that experience of college, right? So we know it’s connected to academic success. There is in our data, when we quantify the quality of a school’s prevention or wellbeing strategy, it is linearly connected to first year retention rates and four year on time graduation rates. So much so in the statistical model that is nearly predictive that the better you do,

safety, well -being, and belonging work, the more likely you’re going to have students persist at your institution. Then, of course, the durable skills that come out of all of these safety and wellness programs. It’s a totally different value prop that is directly aligned to the product that our customers are buying, the experience, the diploma, the comprehensive learner record, and what employers want. That’s the language that we need to use. That’s…


Rob Buelow (37:50.71)

the value prop that’s going to take student affairs from being a cost center in the first place that we go to cut budgets to being an innovation and investment center in higher education. And that’s what I truly believe that we are.


Matthew Sterenberg (38:06.382)

Rob, that’s a great way to end because I think it really summarizes like student affairs is the heart of your college experience. And that is critical to the student, critical to the institution, right? It makes dollars and cents. It’s helping students, helping us churn out students that are more ready and more capable and just a better thing for humanity overall when we focus on these types of things.

So if you are in student affairs and you found this conversation interesting, check out Vector Solutions. I really appreciated our conversation learned a lot and thanks for joining me.


Rob Buelow (39:18.998)

It was a pleasure.


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