Student Satisfaction Inventory provides direction

Kait Vosswinkel, News editor

Every other year, Madison College asks its students to participate in a quick, 15-minute survey. It’s called the SSI, or Student Satisfaction Inventory, and it covers a wide range of topics including parking, financial aid, textbook rental, program planning, and operation.

The survey is coming around again this month, and will be operating from Feb. 13-26. The survey is offered to degree-seeking students, and emails will soon be sent out encouraging participation. Students will receive an email with an individualized link to the survey. It is voluntary, anonymous, and accessible entirely online. If you don’t have a laptop, don’t worry! There will be computer stations open at each campus from Feb. 13-15.

As added incentive, participating students will be entered in a drawing to win great prizes. Prizes include an $800 scholarship, a Kindle, gas cards, golf passes and other fun items.

The Student Satisfaction Inventory has been running since 2007 and measures students’ levels of satisfaction while indicating which issues are most important to them. It is used as a benchmark tool by two-year technical colleges across the nation, and is organized by the independent firm Noel-Levitz.

The firm processes the results of the survey and makes them available about two months after it is completed. They are used as a tool to understand the needs and opportunities across our campuses.

They are used to improve the student experience at Madison College while comparing Madison College’s areas of strengths and weaknesses against other two-year technical colleges in the nation.

Once the results are available, a team from the office of Learner Success uses them to create plans and programs to help make the students’ opinions and suggestions a reality.

For example, the 2010 survey was used to improve the Financial Aid process, increase availability of accelerated and online programs, and to improve the textbook rental system.

Ali Zarrinnam, manager of Institutional Research and Effectiveness at Madison College, stressed the importance of the survey. “It means setting our direction on improving student life.” He explained, “It’s the one time of the year where we get the voice of the student as a whole, from across the school.”

So, students, get on your laptops and participate; it only takes 15 minutes, and your voice will be heard! Let’s improve our campus and school.