Kellogg Community College Increases Course Enrollment Through Texting

How a small, public community college leverages Modern Campus Message to connect hundreds of students with financial grants and lessen course waitlists

About Kellogg Community College




campuses throughout south-central Michigan






students enrolled part-time

in this case study: Jenni Kotowski, Director of Admissions

From an enrollment management standpoint, texting students about quick actions they can take has been a real game changer.

Heidi Nicholas

How Texting Enables Better Student Support

Modern Campus Message connects students with available course sections and reduces waitlists

During KCC’s course registration period, students can put their name on a waitlist if a class is full, in hopes of a spot opening up. But Jenni Kotowksi, Director of Admissions, has noticed that students who sign up for the waitlist often don’t need to have done so—because there’s at least one other section of that course with open seats! 

“Students don’t always scroll down the class schedule. So the first section on the list will have a six-person waiting list and the second section will have 24 spaces still open,” Kotowski says. 

Kotowski and her team were eager to let students know about these open seats, especially because the phenomenon often involves required courses. If students don’t take the course that semester, they’ll fall beyond the path to on-time graduation.

Kotowski’s team tried calling and emailing students but that was rarely successful; students missed the emails or mistook incoming calls for spam.

Then, in Spring 2022, Kotowski tried text messaging powered by Modern Campus Message. Her message was simple: she thanked students for adding their names to the waitlist and presented the good news of spots open in another section, directing learners right to the registration page via hyperlink. 

The results were immediate; on Kotowski’s first attempt, several students switched sections within minutes. So, Kotowski has kept at it and, over three semesters, 65 percent of waitlisted students have registered for an open section within 24 hours of receiving a single text message.


Texts increase financial aid grant rewards

We know our students need help funding their classes and, with Message, we easily get grant opportunities right into their hands. They can click on the link and complete the application right then and there, instead of having to remember to go back to a computer and open their email and fill it out. It’s fantastic for students and for us.

Jenni Kotowski

Through a state-funded program, several hundred KCC students are eligible for $500 tuition grants each semester. All each student needs to do is fill out a short form. 

Yet, in the past, emails about the scholarships often went unread, and KCC left money on the table as eligible students never claimed the grants.

Message has changed all that. For the past several semesters, financial aid staff have scheduled a text message to eligible students. The first time, one hundred students submitted the form within an hour!

We did one last week. I scheduled the messages to be sent at 1:00. And at 1:01, my staff said ‘Did the text message just go out?’ because they could see the applications flooding in for the grant. Texting gets students to react immediately.

Jenni Kotowski
The swift response thrills KCC staff and, more importantly, connecting students to financial aid opportunities promotes greater persistence and retention.


Why Texting Through is KCC’s Favorite Student Communication Channel


As with any college or university, KCC staff know that their emails and calls to students often get ignored—lost in cluttered inboxes or overlooked during a busy day. 

Yet, texts are virtually always read. Worldwide, 98% of text messages are opened. At KCC, only one of the 550 students who received texts about the $500 grant, from Spring 2022 to Spring 2023, has opted out. 

Kotowski also appreciates that she can see the full history of texts any student has received from the college. No spreadsheet is necessary; Message tracks every message, instantly and automatically.

Being able to see what messages are going out is extremely helpful. If a student has received a lot of texts from another department, I might decide to wait on my next message. Or I can double-check that I’ve messaged them about a grant or a course waitlist. It’s great for my own ease of mind and so much easier than having to create our own tracking lists.

Jenni Kotowski

Kotowksi has heard and experienced many instances in which Message saved the day. One anecdote she says exemplifies how much texting resonates with modern students involved KCC’s selective admission Physical Therapy Assistant program.

One accepted student declined their PTA spot. So we went to the alternate list and left the student several voicemails, but she never called us back. Yet, when we texted her, saying we’d love to talk to you, she called us three minutes later.

Jenni Kotowski


Discover additional ways you can use text messaging to connect students with campus resources, extend limited staff resources and boost retention—and how doing so fits into the entire learner journey—in our free guide:


How Text Messaging Supports Every Stage of the Higher Education Journey - download now


Kellogg Community College's Favorite Features

Personalized Student Outreach

Message Calendar

Response Tracking

Integrate your CRM or SIS data to segment your audiences and build targeted communications. Your message will always hit the right people, at the right time.

Plan your texts and watch them work their magic. Pre-schedule everyday communications, coordinate campaigns and avoid sending recipients too many messages at once.

User-friendly analytics allow you to measure the success of your messages—including texting response rates and overall engagement.



Connect with your students, prospects and alumni at each stage of their educational journey.

Explore the leading texting platform for higher education.

Request a demo

About Modern Campus

Modern Campus empowers 1,700+ higher education institutions to attract, engage, and retain learners for life with software solutions that enable a modern student experience. 

The Modern Campus learner-to-earner lifecycle platform powers solutions for web content managementconversational text messagingcatalog and curriculum managementcareer pathwaysstudent engagement and development, and non-traditional student management. The result: innovative institutions engage their modern learners for life, while providing modern administrators with the tools needed to streamline workflows and drive high efficiency.  

Learn how Modern Campus is leading the modern learner-to-earner movement at and follow us on LinkedIn. 

We use cookies on this website to enhance your experience and improve our services and our website’s functionality. By continuing to use our website, which includes remaining on this landing page, you consent to the use of cookies and agree to our Privacy Policy.