Case study: UWC Dilijan College, Armenia
For this article, we have interviewed Madhuchhanda Banerji, Head of Residential Life & Designated Safeguarding Lead at UWC Dilijan College in Armenia.
Founded in 2014, UWC Dilijan College is the first international boarding school in Armenia for students ages 16 to 19 offering the IB Diploma Programme. It is the 14th member of the United World Colleges movement aiming “to make education a force to unite people, nations and cultures for peace and a sustainable future”.
UWC Dilijan is exploring both collecting better data and connecting it in order to develop a better understanding of each of their students; this inevitably involves efficiently monitoring their wellbeing on a regular basis through Komodo custom solutions.
The global pandemic and the inevitable campus lockdown at UWC Dilijan College in Armenia brought up new, unprecedented challenges such as students feeling trapped and unhappy on-site despite its magnificent state - of - the - art facilities on 8 acres partly located in a national park, an area of natural beauty.
Reading into students’ behaviour, academic performance and social skills to gauge their level of wellbeing was no longer viable, and introducing Komodo enabled UWC Dilijan to deploy data-based assessments and interventions.
During the pandemic, many students at UWC Dilijan struggled sometimes both academically and in their social interactions as a result of the campus lockdown. To different degrees, they all started feeling trapped; their behaviour, academic performance and social skills were affected and, as a consequence, so was their overall emotional and mental wellbeing.
In such complex and distressed circumstances, gauging the difficulties of individual students was no easy task for UWC Dilijan residential staff as prior to implementing Komodo they only had their personal observations and interactions to base their judgement on. Madhuchhanda and the UWC Dilijan team were looking for a monitoring solution that would:
- help residential staff and students alike to track their wellbeing
- spot the challenges students are facing due to the pandemic earlier on so that interventions can happen timely
- empower their students to be able to take ownership of their own wellbeing.
Since signing up to Komodo, UWC Dilijan has been regularly:
- surveying students every two weeks
- collecting data and analysing it to assess the wellbeing of individual students
- making sense of data and using it to establish how well each students’ house is doing
- enabling students to reflect on their own wellbeing and to take steps accordingly.
Madhuchhanda has shared her feedback on their experience with Komodo and explained in what ways our solutions have improved their wellbeing approach.
Reduce the guesswork
“Prior to using Komodo, we did not have any data to validate our observations, and staff used their intuition a lot to read students' minds. We had to constantly interact with students and heavily rely on what students felt comfortable disclosing to us directly.”
Data-backed approach & immediate support
“Komodo is helping us with raw data that can be analysed to not only see individual students’ wellbeing but also to see how a particular house out of the six we have, is doing as a whole. Students themselves can see their own wellbeing data and can take steps to improve their wellbeing. They can ask to talk to their house parent by just pressing a button.”
Supporting students' self-awareness
“Komodo can empower students to look after their own wellbeing which can help them in life when they will be more independent. We are preparing them for university life and this is why we are aiming to increase students’ engagement by training staff and students further on the platform.”
Deploying Komodo has enabled UWC Dilijan to gain visibility over students’ wellbeing and implement data-backed interventions at both an individual and group level. They see how powerful data can be in supporting students and, for this reason, they are now arranging dedicated Komodo training sessions to enable their wider staff to make the most of it.
Ready to find out how our solutions can help your school master school-wide wellbeing?