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As higher education marketing professionals convene in Washington D.C. for the 2023 eduWeb Summit, new research on first-generation college students will shed light on how institutional websites can enhance user experiences for this growing audience.

Paskill’s Lead UX Strategist Kelly Kautz will present her research during the eduWeb session, “Does Your Website Work for First-Generation College Students?” at 2:15 p.m. Wednesday, July 19 in Shaw Ballroom B of the Courtyard by Marriott, Downtown Convention Center.

Kautz received an agency grant to discover insights on the attitudes, preferences, needs and behaviors of first-generation college students as they interact with college websites during the admissions, application, and enrollment process.

“We know that first-generation college students are an important audience for all kinds of institutions, and websites are the number one platform for the college-decision process. Are enterprise websites meeting the needs of these students?” asks Kautz, who has been conducting and reviewing surveys for the past year.

Her presentation features compelling metrics and footage of first-gen college students describing their challenges as well as guidance on how to improve their user experience.

“Setting the tone of inclusion and ease of entry is paramount to building a space at your institution for students and families new to higher education.”

As an eduWeb expert in the Web and Digital Experience track, Kautz will also participate in multiple panel discussions during the conference, with colleagues from Rochester Institute of Technology, University of Michigan, University of Virginia, Sienna College, NJIT, and Messiah University.

Enrollment marketing agency Paskill is the longest sponsor of the summit, founded in Philadelphia in 2005. In 2023, eduWeb celebrates its 18th anniversary and is anticipating about 200 attendees from 85 institutions nationwide at the summit.

Kautz established Paskill’s digital strategy practice in 2021. Since then, she has created web solutions for clients such as Harrisburg University, Cambridge College, and Reinhardt University. A former journalist, she has written for publications such as The New York Times, Forbes, Salon, and Target Market Magazine.

Within the past five years, Paskill, as part of JPL, has launched more than 50 institutional websites, microsites, and campaign landing pages. Discover Paskill’s website solutions for colleges and universities.

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