Rich Schechter

Given the extraordinary regulatory and political challenges facing career education, what improvements/innovations does the sector need to implement to remain a leader in higher education?

We need to provide the service and learning experience that our customers – the students – are seeking. We have to “wow” them every step of the way. They have choices, and we must never forget that. This is how we remain competitive – by satisfying the needs of our customers. We must absolutely deliver on what we say we are going to do, and the outcomes will follow. We owe this to our customers. It is at the heart of the value proposition they expect when they come to us in the first place.

Please explain the innovations you’ve brought to (or observed in) career education. What led you to recognize the need for these innovations? What has been their impact on students and higher education?

From the beginning, we recognized that without the ability to present an extraordinary student experience, and if we didn’t weave the fibers of regulatory excellence throughout our entire organization, we would not survive these difficult times. At Medtech, we took it as a wake-up call and a challenge to always do what we say we are going to do and always do the right thing. We are expected to deliver on our promises.

That said, Medtech has worked diligently to stay ahead of the regulations. In the marketing and admissions areas specifically, we believe our role as a marketer is to provide a full plate of accurate information that allows our potential customers to make an informed choice about whether or not they want to do business with us. And, we have taken great pains to make sure all our communication materials provide all the information they will need to make informed choices. We also developed an industry-leading mystery shopping program that includes mystery shops throughout every functional area (similar to traditional mystery shopping programs) as well as during orientation and the first week of classes. This offers a complete and thorough look at the student experience that allows us to note anything that may be out of alignment with the way we want to run the business and enables us to constantly focus on improving. These are just two of many examples of how Medtech has utilized a customer-centric decision making model to improve the overall student experience while achieving regulatory excellence.

What quality about career colleges or their students motivates you personally?

When I see how we change someone’s life by opening the door to an extraordinary new future – one in which the hope of something better becomes reality – that’s all the inspiration I need. Aside from the professional credentials our students take with them upon graduating, they leave with a whole new sense of self confidence … and that’s priceless.

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