Drawing from Accenture’s expertise in digital design, as well as their partnership with Northeastern, the team successfully developed and deployed several digital tools within a matter of weeks to allow around 30,000 students to safely return to campus.
The primary tool is the Student Hub, a portal that serves as the students’ home base for key class information, applications, resources and community engagement. It helps students navigate and keep track of their busy lives using a variety of Microsoft products - including features like:
- Access to Outlook and Canvas
- Registrar announcements and overview of course schedules
- Account information from student financial services
- Updates on dining plans, laundry bucks and university card balances
- Quick links to OneDrive, Yammer and other Microsoft 365 apps
The other tools include the COVID-19 Scheduler, which students use to manage required testing appointments and schedule their vaccines. And finally, the Dynamic Class Scheduler on the Student Hub used to submit weekly preferences for attending class in-person or remotely. The tool then assigns available seats to students who want to physically attend class and provides Northeastern faculty with a roster of who has been cleared to attend. Together, these three tools: the Student Hub, the Covid-19 Scheduler and the Dynamic Class Scheduler deliver integrated insights, notifications and university content to enable the NUFlex model and deliver a highly personalized experience that encourages greater collaboration and engagement, while also keeping students and staff safe.
The transition to NUFlex and the implementation of these digital tools involved extensive collaboration with cross-departmental Northeastern leaders and community members. Embracing Northeastern’s culture of experiential learning, the project team also regularly collaborated with a group of 10 student interns, who directly and continually provided insight into the student experience, helped prioritize new features and shaped content for the site.