Today businesses have become more competitive than ever. For the last few years Lehman College has been facing steep competition from the New York University Colleges. The steep competition has seen a slight reduction in the number of student joining the institution. I have researched on this fundamental issue and gotten several ways on how the school can get a competitive edge over other colleges. This is through comparing how we offer products and services, promotions, price and place to the students and how other institution does it. The purpose of this paper is to compare the products and services and their packaging to students offered by the Lehman College of career exploration and development center and that of the various colleges of the City University of New York. The colleges includes; Brooklyn college, Guttmann community college and the Baruch college.
Lehman College of career exploration and development center is an institution that advices and connects students to career opportunity and other post graduate opportunities. The products and services offered by the college to their students include: Career counselling, job and internship posting and alumni mentoring network. Career counselling helps to guide the students on the opportunity that exists in the area of study that the student wants to pursue. The counselor provides the students with the skill assessment and job search strategies so that it can be easy for a student to get a job once he or she has completed the course (Gillie 2003). The college registers the students for mock interviews to sharpen their skills so that they get knowledge on how to present themselves for future interviews.
Lehman College also makes it easy for its student to get job opportunities by organizing for interviews and seminars with organizations and agencies that want to hire their students. The students submit their resumes to as many companies as possible. These recruitment events are either for the entire Lehman college students or students who have majored in a particular field of study.
The college has not fully exhausted the services and products it offers to the students in terms of promotion as compared to Brooklyn College. This institution has not been able to adopt fully the use of social media in their communication. Brooklyn has an outstanding social media presence that has enabled them to link with many students; they have linked their website with social media. They use Facebook, twitter and email to reach as many students as possible.
Catering for people with disability, now days people with disabilities forms a large percentage of the population. Students who have disabilities face various challenges when in school. In Lehman College it is not clear on how the welfare of the students with disabilities is taken care of. In Baruch College which falls under the City University of New York, they provide accommodation to the disabled students. Assistive technology has been introduced to assist disabled students. In Guttmann College they have removed all architectural barriers that may hinder the movement of the students with disabilities. Office of accessibility services was introduced to cater for people with disability in Guttmann College by ensuring that they access the university fully and benefit from the college resources (Nitecki 2011). Lehman College should establish an organization to deal with the welfare of the disable students so as to attract high number of disabled student in the organization.
Though the Lehman College offers financial aids to needy students which mostly involves tuition money other colleges for example; Guttmann College has gone a step ahead where they have established an online bookstore. Students using their password and username can log in into their account and order the content that they want. A student saves up to 60% off list price when shopping at the market price. Student can also sell back the book at any time of the year. Online book store should be introduced in Lehman College to reduce the cost of accessing reading materials to the students.
Brooklyn College is known for its academic excellence and its innovative program. Like Lehman College, Brooklyn offers scholarship and awards to more than six hundred students, awards and prizes are also offered to the ongoing students (Bensimon 2007). Brooklyn College has a well-established center for academic advisement and student success that helps the undergraduate students in attaining their graduation requirement. Another service that makes Brooklyn college unique is it financial aid to the students. This financial aid helps to cater for the educational needs of those needy students.
Brooklyn just like Lehman College also helps their students in career development and the internship opportunities. This is through the creation of magner career center that offer skills, knowledge and opportunities that are essential to the success of the students in their careers. The magner center offer programs such as, career planning, finding internship, resume and cover letter review and company visits (Lent 2005). The institution also provides housing office where they encourage the students to adopt campus life.
The other college that is under City University of New York is the Baruch College it is ranked among the best college in the country by the world report and the Forbes. The location of the university gives it competitive advantage as it is located near Wall Street. Location near major companies and non-profit organizations therefore makes it easy for students to get internship in those companies. Baruch and the Lehman College offer scholarships to students. Baruch offers scholarships to the New York state residents through their excelsior scholarship program (Bensimon 2007). Career development is another field that the college has invested in through teaching students how to create good cover letters
Guttmann College was established on September 2011. It is the only new community college that the university has established for the last forty years. The college has established an alumni office that ensures all alumni are connected to the college and each other. The alumni office aids their former students in pursuing further studies and in careers. For the ongoing students their welfare and their rights are well looked at. This is done through the establishment of the student governing association. The leaders of the association are elected by their fellow students. The role of the student governing association is to advocate for the rights of the students and to offer advisory roles when important decisions regarding the college are made. The college has also introduced the peer mentoring program where experienced peer counsellors mentor and guide other students.
The table below shows the summary of service point with Lehman competitors.
Summary of service points with Lehman competitors
SERVICE POINT LEHMAN BROOKLYN BARUCH GUTTMANN
PRODUCT Job opportunities and internship.
Career development and internship opportunities Career guidance and counsellingAlumni office aids in careers development and additional education
PRICE Financial aid to needy students Financial aid to needy students Financial aid to needy and disabled students. Cheaper online bookstore
PLACE Seminars in the institution. Company visits. Peer mentoring programs.
PROMOTION social media presence Outstanding social media presence Recommendations
From the research it is evident that the Lehman College requires improvement in their operations. The improvements will help the organization in having a competitive edge over other organization which offers the same products and services as theirs. Social media presence should be prioritized. The College can hire qualified social media manager to operate the social media account and link it to their website. The research also recommends establishment of a department in the college to cater for the welfare of the disabled students. The college should also establish an online bookstore which makes it easy for student to access reading materials at low cost.
Bensimon, E. M. " The underestimated significance of practitioner knowledge in the scholarship of student success." Review of Higher Education (2007): , 441469.
Gillie, S Isenhour, M. G. The educational, social, and economic value of informed and considered career decisions . (2003).
Lent, R. W. "A social cognitive view of career development and counseling." Career development and counseling: Putting theory and research to work (2005): 101-127.
Nitecki, E. M. " The power of the program: How the academic program can improve community college student success. ." Community College Journal of Research and Practice (2011): 98-120.
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