Morgan State University (Morgan State) contacted Swim Digital Group (Swim) to evaluate their current onboarding efforts. Their challenge was due to apparent gaps in processing time for students being onboarded to the University, but it was unclear on exactly where. They also wanted to implement a One Stop Center for students so that there was a single team responsible for the engagement and communications for students, from the moment they are a prospect through to graduation – as it related to Student Affairs. They asked to identify gaps and propose solutions that offer process changes, as well as communications structure for students on the path of enrollment and re-enrollment at Morgan State.


To accomplish the objective above, Swim worked with university leadership and the identified stakeholders for the work ahead. In partnership with stakeholders, Swim analyzed current processes through “Mock-Sessions”, Deep Dives, and Secret Student Experience services. This engagement included all departments that engage the students outside of the classroom to include: admissions, registrar, student life, advising, and financial aid. From these fact finding sessions, Swim worked with stakeholders to develop the path forward.


To create a cohesive process and singular voice, Swim proposed the implementation of the following for Morgan State:

bear essentials

The development of Bear Essentials, a call center responsible for Morgan State’s Admission, Residence Life, and Financial Aid communications and triage. Bear Essentials served as the first point of contact that allowed students to ask questions and transfer to ancillary departments, if necessary. This implementation helped kick off the process of transitioning Morgan’s siloed departments into a single cohesive brand.


Additionally, Swim took over Morgan State’s social media accounts to support the Enrollment Management; Student Success team. By providing streamlined posts and content for Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook, Swim helped Morgan State promote Bear Essentials, as well as provide another point of communication for students.


The creation of an onboarding communication plan that directs students to Bear Essentials for commonly asked questions. It also directed students to the necessary departments for critical needs such as payment plan development, housing appointments, and faculty advising.


The primary indicator that helped Morgan State realize that Swim was needed was the number of complaints to the call center and executive staff. This was significantly decreased within 6 months of the implementation. Additionally, students had less need to call for assistance and guidance due to the improved clarity of communications and next steps.





Frequently Asked Questions

Do I have to apply for aid yearly?

Yes. If your financial circumstances changes, you may receive more or less aid. For example, your eligibility for financial aid could change significantly, especially if you have a different number of family members in college. Renewal of your financial aid package also depends on your satisfactory academic progress (SAP) towards a degree.

I probably don’t qualify for aid. Should I apply for aid anyway?

Yes. Many families mistakenly think they don’t qualify for aid and prevent themselves from receiving financial aid by failing to apply for it. There are a few sources of aid such as unsubsidized Stafford and PLUS loans that are available regardless of need, but you have to fill out a FAFSA to qualify. The FAFSA application is free, we recommend that everyone fill it out

Will financial aid cover all of my costs?

Maybe. In some circumstances, financial aid will cover the student’s full tuition and fees for the school year. However, it could only cover a portion. Once your FAFSA is processed and your award has been packaged, you will receive a letter outlining your full award.