Launch of New Website and Online Classes at Sullivan University Serves Students Better Than Ever
In their passion and ambition to continually care well for current, prospective, and future students, Sullivan teamed up with Hatfield Media to design and develop a new website. While many campuses are being forced to close as a result of Covid-19, the updated website is only expected to enhance Sullivan’s already extensive online learning offerings and capabilities.
Powerful, user-friendly, and aesthetically pleasing websites are imperative to optimum student service in an increasingly digital age. Eric Short, Director of Marketing and Enrollment Management Analytics at Sullivan University, described their motivation as a “desire for a new and refreshed look, better load time, and increased engagement with prospective students.”
Hatfield’s Director of Graphic Design, Shayne Hiles, worked closely with Short to develop an aesthetic for the new website. Their vision was to capture the time-honored brand and logo of Sullivan University, as well as to develop a fresh concept for the individual colleges.
Along with designing a new mini-brand for each Sullivan college, the university brand palette was expanded to include purple and yellow, in addition to the iconic “Sullivan Green.” The end result being a website that offers “menu functionality, a ‘look’ that everyone likes, is seamless, and steps up the game,” says Hiles.
On top of faster load times and structured site organization, the web development team seized the opportunity to exceed expectations, building a site with powerful capabilities. Ray Tri, Lead Back End Developer, recalls, “One of the more exciting things was how we were able to diagnose opportunities for growth.” Spearheading the use of our new custom development platform, the website was able to outperform all previous standards and “give Sullivan an enterprise-class website with more features,” adds Tri. The final product was a great site that loads quickly, provides all the information prospective students need, and offers a pleasant, intuitive navigation experience.”
Sullivan University has been a pioneer, innovator and leader in online education for over 20 years, driven by a keen understanding that not everyone’s life fits into an average college schedule.“Our programs feed into the careers that are in high demand in hiring today,” said Sullivan University President and CEO Dr. Jay Marr. “While we may have to remain distant from each other, our online programs make it easy for students to start or complete their education on their terms.”
“Online learning is inherently flexible,” said Dr. Teresa Daniel, Dean of the Human Resource Leadership Programs at Sullivan. “It’s on your terms. Just like with courses on campus, there are weekly assignments that must be completed. But with online classes you have the flexibility to make your own schedule and get the work done when it works for you.” Taking care to design their courses so that they contain cutting edge information, Daniel says that, “We make sure that they are facilitated by scholar-practitioners with significant real-world experience.” Dr. Daniel says students get the best of both worlds with that combination: The theory, what is known about a topic; and the practice, which is how to apply it.
“Our online classes are always open, and our faculty will answer your questions in a timely manner,” Dr. Daniel says. “Online students have full access to on-campus resources, and our library resources are available online. In addition, our faculty are highly dedicated and will always make time to set up a call when you need it.” With a current emphasis on essential workers and businesses during the pandemic, it is important to note that many of Sullivan’s online programs can lead to essential careers in areas such as Justice and Public Safety or Logistics and Transportation Management. “All it takes to get started,” she said, “is a computer and access to the Internet, strong time-management skills, and the motivation to succeed.”
Sullivan’s online programs are developed by professional instructional designers who work with faculty to develop curriculum and courses offered through Blackboard, Sullivan’s Learning Management System. Blackboard allows instructors to connect with students via Collaborate, a videoconferencing function similar to Zoom. Offering online classes on a convenient, 11-week schedule with four start dates each year, the upcoming fall quarter begins on September 28th.