Culturally Responsive Customer Service: A Holistic Approach to Student Retention

Last updated August 1, 2022

Course Length

1h 31m

Last Updated

August 1, 2022

Culturally Responsive Customer Service: A Holistic Approach to Student Retention

Last updated August 1, 2022

Explore ways to combine service excellence strategies and cultural sensitivity into a holistic framework that supports student retention.


Service excellence requires an ethic of care and cultural sensitivity that recognizes students’ strengths and unique backgrounds to allow you to meet them where they are. Combining these two approaches into a culturally responsive customer service initiative allows an institution to provide holistic support throughout students’ academic journey, which in turn has a direct impact on retention, persistence, and overall student success.

Leading this training are our subject matter experts, Dr. Jessica Lauritsen from Hennepin Technical College and Ivan Lui from The Brooklyn Bridge Alliance for Youth (BBA), who are experienced in successfully implementing a culturally responsive customer service initiative to increase student completion and persistence. Here, they will share their learnings and practical tips for how you can get started with:

  • Understanding initial research on your institution’s student persistence and completion.
  • Assessing the readiness of your institution and its leadership capacity for such an initiative.
  • Using a “serving students” lens to reframe the conversation around intercultural development and cultural competency.
  • Building a sustainable service excellence and retention initiative.

Who should attend?

This virtual training is designed for higher education professionals seeking best practices for aligning customer service initiatives to student retention and success efforts. The training will especially benefit you if you are:

  1. Tasked with leading a customer service or service excellence initiative at your institution.
  2. A campus leader looking to lead culture change and implement a customer service or service excellence program on your campus.
  3. A DEI leader interested in how retention and/or service excellence initiatives can be tied to your work.


October 27, 2022

12:00 p.m. – 2:30 p.m. ET

Hennepin Technical College: A Case Study

We will begin by sharing the story of how this initiative came to be at Hennepin Technical College. Our speakers will share what their research revealed about student persistence and completion, as well as what it also revealed about entrenched faculty and staff beliefs of students’ academic preparedness. They will walk you through how they used a consultative approach to determine the readiness and capacity of Hennepin’s leadership for such an initiative.


Considerations for Your Institution

During the second part of this program, our speakers will guide you through potential considerations and factors impacting your institution’s readiness to implement such an initiative. Using small-group activities and large-group discussions, you will identify potential barriers and opportunities, as well as the actions you need to take to implement your own culturally responsive customer service initiative.