The Role of
Success Coaching
within Higher Ed

Adult learners are more than students

As nontraditional learners, adult learners have more on their mind than studying and classes. Reaching, enrolling, and supporting this growing population requires specialized support that takes into account the whole person and their unique circumstances.

Success coaching takes a holistic approach to address the unique needs of each adult learner to support their success. Academics are just one of the many factors that make up a learner’s journey in returning to (and completing) their education.

Additional factors include work responsibilities, family and caregiving obligations, finances, and sense of self.

A holistic approach: Connection through data

Demographic Data

Age, Location, Marital Status, EmploymentStatus

Financial Data

Profession, Income, Financial Aid Eligibility


Life Situation, External Barriers, Temporary Obstacles, Key Relationships

Psychographic Data

Internal Perspectives, Student Motivations, Reason for Original Stop-Out

Behavioral Data

Email Open Rates, Click-Through Rates, Content Views, Engagement, Landing Page Conversion, Calls, No Shows, SMS


Major, GPA, Completed Courses, Last Attended Date

ReUp success coaching

ReUp Success Coaches offer personalized, one-on-one support to help adult learners discover their goals and interests inside and outside of school, identify what they need most at the moment, and highlight their academic and personal strengths to support them in overcoming potential obstacles.

ReUp's approach includes:

  • Coaching sessions via phone, video, email, and SMS
  • Assessing why they left school and their motivation to return
  • Creating clear goals around school, life, and work
  • Identifying any obstacles to success
  • Personalized resources and reminders

Questions that a ReUp Success Coach may ask their learners:

  • What goals do you want to accomplish this term?
  • How will achieving these goals support you in your life or career?
  • What mindset and actions will empower you to achieve these goals?

Powered by data and patented technology

We’ve gathered millions of data points from our work with adult learners and stopouts that give us insights into their current life situations and motivations for returning to school. This data helps us most effectively reach and serve adult learners and stopout students to provide them with personalized, empathy-driven support and resources.


1 in 3 learners who connect with ReUp enroll

A 215% increase in learners returning to Kalamazoo Valley Community College

For Kalamazoo Valley Community College (KVCC), connecting their students to ReUp Education’s Success Coaches helped them see a 215% increase in student return, translating to 790+ students returning and $630,000 in recaptured tuition.

Prior to partnering with ReUp, KVCC had worked on their own internal re-enrollment campaign, but found that finding adult learners was harder than they thought. According to Evan Pauken, Director of Retention and Completion at KVCC, it was difficult to locate and get in contact with students who had taken a break in their studies, especially after several semesters had passed. ReUp’s technology platform helped locate over 50% of the hard-to-find students in KVCC’s database.

What we feel like students need is a support person that can really dedicate some time to determining the specific barriers they’re facing, help them overcome them and also navigate their way through the system.


Kalamazoo Valley Community College Director of Retention and Completion

ReUp’s patented technology gave ReUp Success Coaches at KVCC the insights and tools they needed to provide high-quality and personalized 1:1 success coaching at scale. Paired with automated outreaches, ReUp was able to strategically deliver the right message at the right time through the right channel.

Recognizing that academics are just one part of an adult learner’s experience, ReUp Success Coaches took a holistic approach that considered a number of factors beyond academics, including work, family, and finances. Whether it was an encouraging word, a direct link to relevant resources, or timely reminders for key application deadlines, ReUp Success Coaches supported KVCC learners every step of the way as they navigated the decision to return to school to pursue their degree.

More than 50 higher-ed institutions like KVCC have partnered with ReUp Education to find, enroll, and engage adult learners at scale and with success. What would success look like at your institution?

From a Success Coach's point of view

As a ReUp Success Coach, Miguel loves engaging with adult learners. He appreciates the safe space that ReUp provides learners to explore their motivations, their values, and the factors beyond academics that impact their success. “Very rarely in our adult life do we get asked, ‘Why do you want to go to college? Why do you want to get your degree? What is that going to do for you?’” he says.

He adds that coaching gives learners the opportunity to connect with someone who can offer the guidance they need without judgment. “How many of us have spoken to a loved one, . . . where you’re just saying something about your life, and it turns into a lecture?” he says. “That’s just not going to happen with coaching.” Instead, learners can share their disappointments and aspirations with confidence, knowing that their Success Coach will listen and offer the kind of unbiased support that isn’t always available when seeking advice from friends or family.

I’m here to help learners through the readmission process and help them feel like they’re prepared and empowered to take on their collegiate journey. I’m in their corner to support growth and explore different strategies with them to get them to their goals.

— Miguel

ReUp Success Coach

In 2021 alone, ReUp tracked more than 12,000 enrollments at their partner institutions.

Student Success Story

Sonya: Determined to Finish

Sonya’s journey started with pursuing an associate’s degree in criminal justice at a community college. Before earning her associate’s, she’d begun having her own children, which meant striking a balance among motherhood and raising 10 children, working full-time at her various jobs, and going to school full-time. Still, Sonya persevered, embarking on her bachelor’s degree. She chose to attend Old Dominion University full-time while continuing to work full-time.

Sonya ended up having to leave college midway through a semester due to family obligations. She had only six classes left to graduate, but she needed to focus on her family.

During her break from ODU, the university partnered with ReUp to support adult learners like Sonya who had left school. She began receiving emails from Nikita, her Success Coach. What Sonya most appreciated about her conversations with Nikita was her Success Coach’s role as accountability partner and guide.

For first-generation and first-time college students alike, coaching can be of tremendous help.

“If you haven’t been through college, it’s hard for you to maneuver your way through it,” Sonya shares. “If you . . . are going to college for the first time, you’re lost, [and] your parents can’t help you do that. It’s like you get thrown to the wolves!”

Success coaching, however, can help students navigate those uncharted waters of higher education. Coaches, she explains, “tell you [schools] have these resources; you can look into this scholarship. And it wasn’t just academically; [Nikita] knew how many kids I have, so she was like, ‘How are the children doing?’”

“The thing that helps you most,” she says of the coaching experience, “is having somebody in your corner because some people don’t have people to push them, tell them they can do it, hold them accountable, and help guide them.”

“It was actually having somebody to hold me accountable—somebody who’s telling me, ‘OK, now this is your goal that you’ve set. Where are you on this goal? How far have you come? Have you sent in this application like we planned?’ And when I didn’t, she’d be like, ‘OK, well, you know, you gotta get your application in soon.’”

— Sonya

Let’s start the conversation

Schedule a call with a ReUp team member to learn more about what a ReUp partnership could do for your institution.