The Gallup-Purdue Index, a new study from Gallup has shown that positive student outcomes are more important than ever for colleges to prioritize. In 2014, Gallup surveyed 30,000 college grads to ask them about their college experiences and life after college.The survey concluded that the student experiences that had the highest impact on long-term life success can be whittled down into two categories: student support, and experiential learning. More specifically, this means a greater focus on mentorship, encouragement, and engaging students with career-focused, experience-centered studies.

Ultimately, the more the college focuses on the student's' well-being and providing more relevant, engaging studies, the more brighter the student's future outlook becomes. Unfortunately, according to the Gallup survey, it's uncommon for college grads to have experienced many of these beneficial opportunities while in college.

This opens up an opportunity for both the student and the school to benefit from.

For the student: Engaged and emotionally-supported students will be better equipped to accomplish their goals and aspirations, and will have a solid foundation to achieve success with their career and beyond.

For the school: Focusing on targeted tactics to improve student outcomes will not only help keep students in school, it will help graduate more students on time, and generate more qualified employees for employers. Ultimately, these tactics could also drive an increase in enrollments either through word of mouth, or through your strategic sharing of student success stories.

If schools choose to prioritize the student experience first, performance metrics such as retention, graduation rates, and enrollment rates should see a significant increase.

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