The University of New Haven has seen an incredible adoption of the Event Check-in App, with roughly 200 Recognized Student Organizations (RSOs) and additional departments and various staff utilizing the app regularly. In this article, we highlight the initiative they have implemented to support this widespread adoption!
Incentivizing Use of the App
The Undergraduate Student Government Organization (USGA) at New Haven is responsible for managing an initiative to encourage organization attendance tracking.
The USGA recognizes all University of New Haven organizations. RSOs are classified by holding either Blue or Gold status, and their status determines their ability to receive funding from the institution. RSOs are required to use the Event Check-in App to report attendance to gain "points" towards achieving Gold status or maintaining it from year to year. Essentially, by making use of ECIA mandatory to receive other campus benefits, New Haven has successfully made use of the app an integrated part of campus culture.
RSOs receive 1 point for every event attendee, and 2 points if that student is on the organization roster (with a possible point-cap per event). This incentivizes student organizations to use ECIA for events as small as organization meetings, and incentivizes students to keep updated roster records!
All RSOs are initially recognized as Blue Status - the basic level of recognition. Blue Status organizations have access to the Student Activity Fee and may request up to $500.00 in budget each year. However, Blue Status organizations are not able to access miscellaneous funds beyond that initial $500.00 each year.
After two full, consecutive semesters recognized as Blue (in other words, being a club on campus for a full year) organizations can seek approval for Gold status and must be voted on. However, the Top 20 organizations who receive the most points throughout the year by event attendance automatically become Gold and can bypass the approval process! This aspect of the process creates a huge incentive around utilizing the Event Check-in App.
While Blue Status RSOs are restricted to a $500.00 annual request budget, Gold Status RSOs can ask for a detailed budget of however much money they think they will need or want for the year. Access to greater funding is a huge benefit of obtaining this status. In order to maintain Gold status from year to year, an organization must have obtained at least one hundred (100) points and have held at least three (3) campus-wide events before the close of the academic year. This policy ensures students are actively using ECIA for attendance tracking while also encouraging students to engage with the campus community through event planning.
Student Organization Training
When returning students came back to campus, a “How To” presentation on Mobile Check In was offered multiple times to teach RSOs how to use it the application. You can view this presentation here.
Why Students Love It
Students at New Haven love how the app updates event attendance in real time, and they can watch the numbers increase as they are physically checking students in. This immediate data gives students an instant sense of gratification to the success of their events and gives them an instant picture of the event's audience. Students attending events also love the ease of pulling up their Event Pass on their phones and apple watches to get into an event.
Because so many individual student groups are utilizing the app, administrators at New Haven have seen an exceptional increase in the amount of data being recorded. Each piece of attendance tracking data is used by the staff in the Center for Student Engagement, Leadership, and Orientation.
In addition, when students arrive for events now, many of them come with their codes in hand, expecting to be checked in, or they will ask someone before they walk in who should scan their code. It quickly became a campus norm, so much that now there are also other offices and departments on board.