Are you creating a Five Star Student Experience for Generation Z?

Article by Entrust Datacard
Gen Z (or iGen) consists of those born from 1995 through 2012. This is the first generational group that has never lived without the internet; they are digital natives and can filter out what is not relevant to them. Gen Z students are known as the mobile generation with short attention spans and can multi-task on an average of 5+ screens. They communicate in pictures and are constantly creating their own “brand” through YouTube, Snapchat, Instagram and other social media. These students are a major participant in “influencer marketing” where they not only listen to others across various digital channels but they love to share what they learn and experience. They also have grown up in a ratings world where a five star experience is an expectation versus an aspiration.

How does this translate to a University ID Card Program? Doing things “the way we always have done them” is not going to cut it for Generation Z. Attracting and retaining Gen Z students requires colleges and universities to dramatically redefine their approach to creating positive user experiences for this group on university campuses. 
The student experience encompasses all of the touchpoints that a student has with the university. The issuance of the campus ID card at orientation, one of the first touchpoints, sets the tone for a student’s experience. A new and upgraded approach, starting with the university ID card program, ensures a positive beginning to the student experience for Generation Z.
How many universities market a brand image of “High Tech Research University” to students and end up having a Student ID card that resembles a retail wholesale club card? On the one piece of tangible university branding that students use and interact with on a daily basis, does this best communicate the university’s desired brand image? How about a “tech-forward” university not using the ID card for multiple functions across campus (access control, vending, meal plans, laundry, library, transportation, etc.) while a two-year and less-expensive school down the road is? Does this communicate the right message to students and reinforce the university’s value?

The campus card administrator plays a huge role in the student experience — while trying to balance adding functionality with infrastructure costs, tight budgets and overall program security. This is a complicated task. Entrust Datacard offers innovative, custom-tailored ID technology solutions to meet and exceed the unique needs of Generation Z, while helping to navigate the needs and complexities of today’s University Card Administrator.
Create positive student experiences through your ID program. Consider these innovative card program initiatives:
·     Streamline student orientation with multi-location capture, enrollment and printing capabilities
·     Enable student IDs to be used safely and securely throughout campus and beyond with contactless “OneCard” multi-use IDs
·      Enhance or personalize your school’s brand image with vibrant ID images, and improve card security and durability through state of the art printings and supplies technology
To learn more, visit 
Contributed by Jeff Meier
Jeff Meier is the Director of Identity and Management Solutions at Entrust Datacard Corporation. Over his 21-year career, he has worked in a variety of Marketing roles in the security and consumer products industries with companies: Newell Rubbermaid, Schlage Lock Company (Allegion) and Honeywell International. In his solutions director role, he's responsible for understanding the key issues and needs of vertical markets in the secure ID space and developing creative product and software solutions to solve them.

About Us

The mission of the association is to assist the institutions of higher education in the Member States of the European Union and other European Countries to implement and operate campus card programmes by facilitating information exchange, by developing European standards where appropriate and by acting as a forum for interaction between the institutions and other agencies with an interest in campus card applications in Higher Education.


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