Deeply rooted Chicago-based institution of higher education, founded in 1894, with locations in nine U.S. cities and a European partner institution.
NLU’s unique value proposition had lost its way both internally and in the external marketplace. The major gifts component of the institution’s development program had been dormant for more than 20 years. In a highly competitive higher education market, NLU’s marketing messages did not attract contemporary adult learners.
"NLU's unique value proposition had lost its way both internally and in the external marketplace."
K2 Role &
K2 embarked on remaking the university’s image by positioning the institution as a thought leader in two of Chicago’s most of urgent concerns: the nationwide teacher shortage and public school reform. Community engagement strategies were implemented such as NLU’s hosting of policy forums with national experts including the Secretary of Education, and then-CPS President Arne Duncan. These strategies transformed NLU’s image and the university’s ability to attract and engage high-profile board leadership. These organizational successes also paved the way for new gifts, with many first-time donors giving six and seven-figure gifts to endow critical faculty positions and programs. New marketing initiatives increased enrollment leads by 33% in less than one month.
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