‘Turning Over’ A Robust Workforce Despite the Pandemic: Enrollment Surges in the North Carolina Community College System

As the third-largest community college system in the nation, the North Carolina Community College System (NCCCS) serves as a hub for connecting residents to the state’s thriving workforce.

When the 58 colleges of NCCCS sought to solidify their messaging during the global health crisis, they asked Interact Communications to help craft a unified campaign to rally the state.

The effective strategy focused on promoting scholarships through the Governor’s Emergency Education Relief Fund to help students earn industry-recognized credentials for in-demand jobs across 10 essential workforce pathways.

Through the development of an engaging messaging strategy and an inspirational digital and print campaign, community college students and the local workforce thrived despite the challenging times.

Maximizing the Message, Mobilizing Students

With $15 million from the Governor’s Emergency Education Relief Fund and high-demand workforce programs ready to roll, NCCCS was poised to reach prospective students and help give the state’s economy — and college enrollment —a shot in the arm.

Through regional research, sensitive strategy, and creative marketing efforts, motivational messaging inspired underemployed and unemployed North Carolina residents. Interact worked alongside NCCCS’ Executive Director of Communications to develop the best combination of tools for the 58 colleges’ unique needs.

That’s when the “Turn Over a New You” tagline was born, leading the way to dynamic, flexible collateral that could be used across the board. From social media pages to YouTube and Spotify ads, plus a new scholarship landing page, the campaign presented students with a clear, stress-free path to get a strong career and get back to work, no matter where they were in the state.


The team mapped out the necessary toolkits for the 58 unique campuses in the college system. By gathering performance metrics, analytics, and current branding efforts, a unified message was crafted to engage students across the state — garnering +18,400 visits to NCCCS’ landing page over just five months.

This strategy led to a .21 percent average click-through rate — compared to the industry average of .15 percent — leading visitors back to the NCCCS landing page. This statistic demonstrates that most visitors found the information relevant and helpful. The landing page led to higher engagement within the college system, encouraging prospective students to enroll.


An engaging suite of digital and print material seamlessly incorporated the new “Turn Over a New You” messaging. Deliverables included digital and social ads in addition to video and radio spots for YouTube and Spotify to showcase a fresh, inspiring campaign. The efforts resulted in +600,000 total YouTube views and garnered a 43 percent completed video view rate — 20 percent higher than the industry average!


Consistent, convincing messaging about making a fresh start was conveyed throughout flyers, postcards, email, and social ads. The dynamic campaign spread the news about employment and education opportunities across Facebook and Instagram, translating to more than 1.3 million impressions.

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