In this blog post, we’ll explore strategies to recruit students for new or unknown classes. Discover actionable advice and practical tips to enhance student enrollment. As well as gain administrative support, and create awareness within your community.

How do you recruit students for a class that they have no idea what it is (neither does the administration)?

Today’s question comes from a health sciences teacher who is teaching a new biomedical technology class. She’s facing the challenge of recruiting students for a class they (and the administration) know little about.

Let’s dive into some effective strategies to overcome this hurdle.

Strategy 1: Promoting Your Class All Year Round

To create awareness and generate interest, consistent promotion is key. Highlight your class and its activities, even if you’re not recruiting.

Share pictures and updates through your school’s PR or website. Letting parents and the community “see” what you do in class creates a sense of curiosity.

Strategy 2: Engaging Administrators and Counselors

Collaborating with administrators and counselors can impact student enrollment. Invite them to observe your class firsthand.

While administrators are essential, counselors play a crucial role in filling your classes. They can observe successful students and experience what your class is like.

Another strategy for the adults is to teach them something that’s useful to them. It could be how to use a plasma cutter to create yard art. Or even planning a successful salsa garden including pest-deterring plants.

Strategy 3: Targeted Invitations

Sending personalized invitations can yield excellent results. A good place to start is by identifying students with both aptitude and interest in your course. Collaborate with counselors to identify potential candidates.

You can send them snail mail or emails telling them about your course. Or you can invite them to special events like guest speaker sessions, targeted field trips, or lunch and learn sessions. Always follow up with the fact that your class is one of the stepping stones to these careers.

In Summary

To boost student enrollment, put in place a combination of strategies. Start with what feels comfortable, and then push yourself to try a riskier approach. Measure the impact of your efforts throughout the school year to determine their effectiveness. By following these recruitment strategies, you’ll pave the way for a successful program.

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I’ve decided to do a thing. I’m going to be having a limited edition summer series where I answer your questions and give you some feedback and advice, and some of the other knowledge nuggets that I have accumulated over my last 15-plus years in education to help you be a successful multiple prep CTE.

Welcome to The Secondary Teacher Podcast, the podcast for middle and high school. Teachers juggling multiple preps to get the strategies to reduce overwhelm so that you don’t have to choose between being an effective teacher and prioritizing important relationships. I’m your host, Khristen Masek, a 10-year high school engineering teacher, former middle school assistant principal, and teacher coach.

Every week we will discuss strategies, systems, and time-saving tips to help you not only survive but thrive as a multiple prep teacher. Today’s question comes from, Kylie and Kylie is teaching health sciences specifically. She’s being asked to teach a biomedical technology course or start that program, and she’s been working through that, but it’s been really challenging.

The question she asked me was, how do you recruit students for a class that they have no idea what it is and neither does the administration? This is a tough question and a tough scenario to be in because it is a long game. I think that the toughest part of the answer to this is that the.

Information that I give you, you can implement it, but you probably won’t see results overnight. The good thing is, is that it sounds like your administration asked you to teach this course, which means that you have a little bit of a buffer area or buffer zone because they want you to. Increase or grow this program.

And so they’re going to possibly be a little bit lenient on how many students you have in those courses, but that won’t last forever. Here are some things that you can do to help increase those numbers, that enrollment, and really get that awareness out in your community of your class.

The first thing is, and this is the overarching thing for this class or any new class, is that you need the community to experience your course. And I’m going to give you a few different ways of experiencing that. And I’m saying experience with the air quotes because they don’t necessarily need to.

Be in your classroom to experience what is going on in there. Okay. The first one is you need to be promoting your class all year round. And it’s not that you are recruiting per se, you’re not saying, Hey, sign up for my class. But you’re letting people know what is going on in your classroom in that particular class all the time.

And that can be as simple as once a month you have some pictures that you have sent to whoever is over your PR or your website, and they post an article for you. That is always being something that people are seeing in their mind. Oh, we have a new biomedical career class, bio biomedical technology class happening at our campus.

What is that? I’m not really sure where that is, but I keep seeing stuff about it and it looks like they’re doing this and they’re doing this and they’re learning this. Having that kind of top of mind so that your parents, your community, people know what’s going on at your school. You can also set Google Calendar reminders if you have a hard time remembering to put those pieces together.

And in reality, you can have a template. And with our good friend Chat, e b T, you could have them write. A blurb for you, so you could give a simple explanation of what was going on that day in your class and have it spit out something, and then you go through it and make sure that everything is correct before sending it on to someone else.

You could also have your students write the blurb for you, in their perspective, what were you learning? What were you doing in class? Alright, the next way to get your community to experience your class is to get your admin and your counselors in your classes. Now, your admin are important, and this is coming from a former assistant principal, but.

Really when it comes to getting your classes full, it’s your counselors. If you can’t have both of these groups, you can only have one go with your counselors. You’ll want to have your counselors either come during class, there’s a good thing for, there’s some pros and cons. The pro is that they can ski the type of students in your class.

That could be, that is usually a pro, because then they can see how successful they’re being. It could be a con if you right now are only attracting a certain demographic and you would like to expand it to other demographics, but that can give them an idea of what is happening and they can see students being successful and.

Participating in labs and maybe seeing them outside of their interactions with them. The other thing you could do is have your counselors or those other adults learn something that is beneficial to them that you also teach in your class. I’m not as well versed in biomedical technology, so I don’t wanna give you an example for that and completely be off base.

But when I was doing architecture, one of the things that we did was we could do like landscape architecture and look at various plants that were native to Utah and that grew well in Utah. And we would go over specifically how you could design. A spot in your yard to use those native plants.

Having the adults experience that and maybe having them plan out a part of their space or yard that they would be able to use and find out those plants, it would be best for them, would directly show what you teach, but then also benefit them so that they remember what you taught. And then the third way that you can have your community experiences is create some targeted invites.

I’ve had a teacher in the past who actually sent home letters to all incoming freshmen to his class, inviting them to come to the class, and he did more of like a flock shot kind of a approach. But for this example, you would really want to find students who have the aptitude and the interest. To be successful in your class.

One thing that Kylie also mentioned for anyone else who’s listening is that it is a technically difficult course, which can also add its own challenges. Having students that have the aptitude and the interest in being there will greatly increase it. Now, you are probably going to get students who are interested, but where you really need to focus on is getting those kids who have the aptitude for it, who don’t realize that they could be successful in those careers later on.

But don’t feel like they really would be successful or perhaps they’re just taking whatever classes their friends are taking. This the challenge here in lies in how do you find those students? My best advice would be to work with your counselors to see if they are already doing something when it comes to aptitudes and interests.

More likely than not, they’re doing some sort of interest something, but. Perhaps they are doing. An aptitude thing as well. I know there are some software programs, some programs out there that are measuring aptitude as well, and that you can get reports from that that can help you target those students.

Then when you find out who those students are, now you can get real on your recruiting efforts. You could send them the letters, something snail mail, because nobody else. Ever gets anything in the mail. You could do emails which may or may not get read, but it is another strategy. The other thing you could do is you could invite them, these particular students to come to a guest speaker at lunch, who is someone from your career?

Have them bring their friends. Who cares? The more the merrier, but you really want those students in there. You also could have a targeted field trip for not just your students, but these other students that you think might. Fit into this class later on. And then you could also just do a lunch and learn thing where maybe you are teaching a concept to get these students insight excited to possibly take your class for next year.

For your homework, I want you to think of which one of these things that you feel the most comfortable with, and then one. That might push you a little bit, it might be a little bit riskier and attempt to do both of those this coming school year and see how it goes. Now remember, if you have a question like Kylie’s or something that’s completely different than Kylie’s, make sure that you submit that to me.

You can either send it via email. Or on Instagram so that I can answer your question next week until next time.

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