Artificial Intelligence

Conversational AI Chatbot Supports Prospective Students at University of South Carolina Aiken

student looking at cell phone

Prospective students at the University of South Carolina Aiken can now get on-demand support throughout their admissions and enrollment process by communicating with an artificial intelligence chatbot. The university partnered with AdmitHub to develop the conversational AI tool, which is accessible via text message and Facebook Messenger. Its goal: to help students transition to college and reduce "summer melt," the phenomenon in which admitted students fail to show up for fall enrollment.

"Today's college students communicate differently, and when we saw e-mail responsiveness begin to decline, we knew we needed a solution that could meet students where they are," said Daniel Robb, associate vice chancellor for enrollment management at USC Aiken, in a statement. "This cutting-edge AI technology has enabled us to communicate directly with students in real-time via text message — helping ensure a smooth start to the college experience and giving more students across the United States the chance to pursue a college education."

Since the launch of the chatbot at USC Aiken, 28 percent more students have committed to enrolling and 58 percent more have signed up for first-year orientation in fall 2019 compared to fall 2018, according to a news announcement.

"Preparing for college is about more than academics — and it's often the non-academic factors, from financial aid paperwork to unexpected deadlines, that create the most significant barriers for students," said Drew Magliozzi, co-founder and CEO of AdmitHub. "AI can help colleges not only respond to students' questions at the moment of need — but also learn from thousands of interactions to better anticipate and address common challenges."

About the Author

About the author: Rhea Kelly is executive editor for Campus Technology. She can be reached at rkelly@1105media.com.

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