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March 19, 2019

Why I joined Higher Digital?

Michael Agnew

The last several days have been full of wonderful congratulatory messages. I appreciate everyone who has reached out and thank you all for your kind words. I’ve been thinking about this move to Higher Digital for several months now as the means to better leverage my skills and experience to help address the challenges I see within global higher education.   Releasing this news and seeing subsequent responses have given me the necessary incentive to write a blog about the drivers behind my decision to join Higher Digital, a decision which I’m truly enthused about!

Higher Education is facing new and disruptive challenges.  I have witnessed many institutions on both sides of the Atlantic that are under significant financial pressures. Their costs continue to rise, but what makes this worse is that students are also questioning whether a higher education degree is worth it.  For chancellors and provosts (pro vice-chancellors), this only intensifies the stress and pressure to compete for a shrinking pool of prospects using traditional methods; however, with Higher Digital I see signs that show there is another way to meet the mission of delivering education and degrees – by investing organisationally, operationally, and technically in offering a better student experience.

Over the last 3 to 4 years, the image of both the U.K. and the U.S.A. has deteriorated as a result of political changes in the minds of international student prospects and academic staff.  The U.K., which is one of Higher Digital’s new markets, is facing a perfect storm of political pressures which has manifested in falling international enrolments and access to research monies.  Whilst EU and other territories’ institutions will certainly offer places to these international prospects, U.K. universities that offer a leading student experience will continue to thrive, despite these political conditions.

I recognised that these challenges are where Higher Digital can help, through its collective thought and product leadership in global Higher Education.  SEA(RESULTS), Higher Digital’s innovative Institutional Health Assessment, aims to provide an alternative to obtaining consulting advice through traditional methods. Now we are able to deliver industry benchmarking, digital health assessment, and a full diagnostic technology plan to help quickly pinpoint the areas of highest need.

I’m excited to contribute my product and digital expertise to Higher Digital in order to help the many education leaders in the U.K. and EU markets overcome such challenges as outlined above and excel at making technology a cornerstone to improving their student experiences.

#HigherEducation #DigitalTransformation

Reprinted from an earlier LinkedIn post.

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