Our Work In Practice

RHB’s Slate and Enrollment Management expertise helped three institutions merge into Vermont State University


In April 2021, Vermont State Colleges System (VSCS) embarked on an ambitious five-year plan that included the unification of Castleton University, Northern Vermont University and Vermont Technical College under a common accreditation and identity as Vermont State University. A key priority of this system unification included consolidating campus databases into a single system, one of many components and complexities involved in the unification of multiple campuses. With varying levels of CRM usage in terms of time and experience, customized processes and user access tiers, this project represented far more than a technical implementation. This significant consolidation of three Slate databases into one included administrative services and solutions across the system. VSCS approached RHB to guide the consolidation of Technolutions Slate, leveraged independently at each institution, into a centralized platform that would serve the new university for recruitment and admission across undergraduate and graduate populations. Recognizing that this migration represented more than a systems merger, RHB recommended the exploration of a new organizational model and the staffing requirements necessary to support new processes and change management.


Three colleges that had been recruiting separately to their institutions (often in competition with each other) would now be unifying those efforts. VSCS asked RHB for counsel on bringing those specialized recruiting functions together to help the new institution reach its recruitment goals and simultaneously standardize processes.


Our Enrollment Management practice conducted a data and document analysis and interviews with the enrollment teams from each college to assess the readiness of their structure, staffing and systems for this future state. With a student-centric approach to recruitment and enrollment as their “North Star,” our work with the Vermont State teams coalesced around three main themes:

  • Rebalancing to leverage their strengths
  • Creating consistency with policies, personnel and processes
  • Fostering a culture of collaboration among offices and with campus partners

To begin our work with Slate, our team engaged stakeholders at each VSCS campus in a multi-day consultation to understand established processes and ambitions. This work led to developing an internal gap analysis and roadmap for implementation. RHB’s team of consultants guided conversations on process evolution and creative solutions for system management and maintenance. We collaborated closely with stakeholders to design a solution to manage program updates resulting from the merger and modifications to more than 120 programs and a coherent strategy to consolidate hundreds of fields, prompts, queries, forms and messages into a manageable and sustainable system for years to come.


Vermont State University took their undergraduate application and surrounding processes live in August 2022, and this internal process allowed for seamless updates to these program requirements. Consolidating three institutional applications into one application enables VSU to consolidate application management processes and streamline ongoing maintenance and updates. Additionally, moving from multiple workflows across campuses, our team consolidated over seven workflows across the three campuses into a singular workflow for undergraduate and a separate workflow for graduate programs, allowing all groups to share a centralized reading and evaluation process. On the recruitment side of the house, VSU now boasts a singular inquiry form that spans the campuses and has consolidated communications with new institutional branding. Our team was able to cadence and segment communications in such a way that marketing efforts do not overlap and are complementary. This ties into the consolidation of events, landing pages and travel, all now managed within VSU’s centralized database, allowing prospective students and supporters to meet any representatives from any campus through a single view. While our team will often implement undergraduate and graduate components in tandem, based on additional decisions needed at the institutional level, VSU opted to implement graduate programs independently. We also commend the university community for the important and challenging work of institutional consolidation and the multi-year process of optimization to ensure that Vermont State University offers high-quality, flexible and affordable education.

RHB Services Engaged:
Data and Document Review
Enrollment Organizational Assessment
Slate Applicant Experience Portal
Slate Implementation
Stakeholder Interviews
Technology Assessment and Gap Analysis