Loyola College, a 3,500 student strong institution in Maryland, wanted off-campus benefits for its students, the same that two nearby schools–-Johns Hopkins University and Goucher College-–were offering. It had even become an issue during the college’s 2007 student body presidential race.
But as with any off-campus program, particularly one enabling students to dine at nearby restaurants, the school was concerned it would damage its on-campus dining and retail programs. Instead, the school has seen an increase in student deposits, all probably directly related to the off-campus program implemented and run by campus card provider Blackboard.
Loyola students wanted to use their ID cards at shopping and dining facilities near the campus. In fact, one of the candidates vying for the student government presidency made an off-campus merchant program part of his platform.
At the time, Loyola offered two student debit account options: a restricted meal account for access to its five on-site restaurants and dining areas, and the Evergreen account for vending and laundry machines and other discretionary purchases. Loyola had relied heavily on its on-campus retail facilities, with almost 100% of its revenue coming through the dining areas and on-campus vending machines.
Last fall, Loyola, a Jesuit Catholic university founded in 1852, turned to Blackboard’s off-campus management solution, BbOne. Adding this partner into its transaction environment has now allowed Loyola to see its current revenue base grow with the flexibility to become even more profitable each year moving forward.
Students have adopted the BbOne program extremely quickly and Loyola has already seen huge benefits. Within one-year of implementation, the BbOne program has had a 48% penetration rate with students.
Prior to using BbOne, Loyola students had deposited approximately $7 million each year into the two debit accounts. Since implementing the off-campus program, Loyola has seen its meal deposits grow from $4.1 million to almost $4.3 million. Additionally, the Evergreen account has seen deposits significantly exceed goals, increasing 21% in less than a year from $2.8 million to $3.4 million.
Currently, Loyola has just five off-campus partners including Chipotle, CVS Pharmacy and three local Baltimore eateries. As Loyola plans for the future, the college is negotiating with additional dining and retail venues for the students as well as food delivery options like pizza and Chinese food. Loyola’s success, with just five local businesses, is the result of a strategic selection process that resulted in the most highly-trafficked and relevant student businesses.
“BbOne is a win-win for everyone,” says Mike Mansfield, Loyola’s director of student administrative services. “From a student’s standpoint, it gives them more options to find what they need at all hours of the day. From an on-campus services standpoint, we see it as a positive opportunity because it challenges us to continue building a better, on-campus environment for the students. We’ve been able to give the students everything they want and they love it.”