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OSHE Some College, No Degree Campaign

The Office of Innovation is working with the NJ State Office of the Secretary of Higher Education (OSHE) to launch the Some College, No Degree (SCND) campaign encouraging New Jersey students, who started college, but left before finishing their degree, to return. This work is being undertaken by the C+E Lab.


Roughly 1 million New Jerseyans have started college, but stopped before completing their degree. The State, led by OSHE, has launched a suite of financial assistance and coaching tools to help these individuals to return to school and earn their degree.

Innovation In Action

To help the OSHE project team persuade non-returning students to re-enroll in higher education, the C+E Lab is tasked with helping create a marketing campaign to drive awareness and uptake of these programs and services. The C+E lab conducted ethnographic research to understand the target audience’s underlying motivations. This research then informed the creation of a communication strategy that will ultimately move these individuals to return to college and complete their degree.

Impact + Metrics

  • The C+E Lab’s research shifted OSHE’s understanding of their target audience, and revealed that the State’s approach would not motivate students to return and could be potentially alienating.
  • Based on its research, the Lab developed a communication strategy that reframed the State’s narrative and recommended media channels and budgets to meet the audience where they are – particularly underserved communities.
  • Also based on its research, the Lab developed creative concepts that brought the communication strategy to life, and quantitatively validated the concepts as most effective in creating awareness and intent.


  • The C+E Lab is leading the development of creative assets that will support the launch of the SCND paid media campaign in late August. We will continue to provide advisory support to OSHE through the end of the SCND campaign in December.


  • NJ State Office of the Secretary of Higher Education

Last updated on 10/26/23

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