April 06, 2017 09:00 ET

Fast-Growing Mobile App Launches Smart Calendar to Help Students Navigate Complexities of College

Students and administrators can now integrate academic, work, and co-curricular schedules to streamline support services and improve first-year experience

MONTREAL, QC--(Marketwired - Apr 6, 2017) - OOHLALA, a mobile app now used by now by over 200 colleges and universities worldwide, today announced the launch of a smart calendar feature aimed at reducing the complexity of campus life by enabling students to easily track activities on and off campus.

"Since introducing OOHLALA on campus, we have seen an immediate uptick in our first-year semester-over-semester retention rate," said Chris Schmidt, Dean of Lindsey Wilson College. "By providing a one-stop platform for academics and campus life, OOHLALA helps incoming students make an easier transition into college and stay engaged, which we know is critical to their future success."

Research suggests that nearly 30 percent of first-year college students do not return to school for a second year, as they struggle to navigate the complexity of campus life and access the growing array of support services. Similarly, just 22 percent of working students complete college within six years, often due to the challenges of balancing competing work and school priorities. 

Designed in collaboration with college and university partners, including McGill University and Lindsey Wilson College, OOHLALA's smart calendar integrates class and work schedules, course assignments and exam schedules, campus events, and other activities into one calendar. Rooted in cutting-edge research on the positive impact of self-regulation skills, the app is designed to help students build effective study habits, keep track of coursework, and stay connected to campus activities and student services.

"As soon as they arrive on campus, students face a barrage of information, from academics and financial aid to student services and co-curriculars. The challenge is especially acute for first-generation students, and a growing population who have to balance academics with work or other personal responsibilities," said Danial Jameel, Co-Founder and CEO of OOHLALA. "Integrating these activities and commitments together in a single, simple interface helps students manage their time effectively to improve persistence." 

Data from an initial pilot at Lindsey Wilson College in Kentucky shows that the app helped to reduce the number of first-year dropouts by 17 percent. At McGill, where OOHLALA worked with 10 different departments across campus to aggregate information, over 90 percent of students who used the app reported that it helped them get off to a good start at the university.

Developed by student affairs professionals, education researchers, and engineers, OOHLALA uses machine learning, customizable alerts, and self-regulation tools to streamline and guide students' daily experience. The app integrates with schools' Learning Management Systems (LMS) and Student Information Systems (SIS) to give students easy access to courses and assignments, career workshops, and out-of-classroom support services. Students are also able to set daily alarms and use GPS technology to make it to class on time. 

An alumnus of Y Combinator, OOHLALA recently secured $4 million in Series A funding led by University Ventures, the premier investment firm focused on higher education, alongside NFL Hall of Famer Joe Montana's Liquid 2 fund.

OOHLALA, founded by student affairs professionals, builds mobile apps for higher education institutions to affect and improve the student experience. The platform is designed to support student success by unifying campus resources -- LMS, co-curricular, athletics, clubs/orgs, events and many more -- within a branded, integrated, college app. Over 200 institutions have joined the OOHLALA-family, connecting hundreds of thousands of students with their administrators, their campus, and most importantly, their peers. For more information, visit

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