About Us

Campus Sonar partners with higher education focused leadership teams to guide research-led transformation. We empower leaders with online conversation insights and social listening data to develop and align their strategies with the goals of the institutions they serve.

We use our expertise and deep industry knowledge to build connection and trust within the higher ed community, and align and elevate data-informed strategies in brand and reputation strategy, enrollment strategy, and strategic planning and organizational strategy for the clients we support. 

Four Sonarians standing facing forward, one woman standing with a laptop facing out and one woman standing with a notebook across her chest
One woman from Campus Sonar holding a mobile phone with a graph and one woman from a campus sitting in office chairs facing each other with speech bubbles

We listen so you can be heard.

We’re not just your partner, we’re your strategic expert. Together we chart a path by collaborating to deeply understand your priorities and questions, ultimately defining our shared vision and action plan. Along the way we increase your capacity by identifying obstacles and opportunities. We build your capabilities, empowering your team and extending their expertise. 

Our approach encourages ideation and communication, and sharing expertise and coaching as we make progress toward your goals. 

Add capacity and build your capabilities with crucial industry context.

Your partnership team includes a strategist and analyst who are the best in their field—confident in their expertise, credible and dependable partners, connectors of ideas and people, and courageous and inquisitive in supporting your progress toward your goals.

They use our proprietary, one-of-a-kind dataset to provide context to your social listening data and insights. The context is critical for executive decision making, strategy development and execution, and cabinet or board understanding. We have sole access to this data, including the historical trend context of the pandemic’s impact on higher education.

With exclusive data and an expert team, you'll move forward with guidance and support in charting direction, identifying obstacles and opportunities, and sharing expertise and coaching to ensure you make continued progress.
Three Sonarians in front of a smartboard, one person is kneeling like he is drawing the graph on the board

Build a Shared Vision

We learn the complexities of your campus and collaborate to build a shared vision for how we work together and the goals we work toward. 

Explore and Apply Insights

We support and coach you through new ways of using and incorporating social insights into your work, while we make progress on your goals.

Make Strategic Progress

We continue our strong relationship and maintain progress toward your campus and partnership goals. 

Liz Gross

Our vision is for higher education to rebuild the public's trust and build authentic relationships. We'll do this by transforming universities into audience-centric organizations and preparing the next generation of higher ed leaders.

Liz Gross, Founder and CEO

Our History

Campus Sonar launched as a small start-up in 2017. Campus Sonar is a division of Northstar Education Services, LLC, an affiliate of Ascendium Education Group, an education solutions company that has been a trusted campus partner for 50 years. Beyond our extensive history and expertise in higher education, Ascendium Education Solutions (formerly Great Lakes Higher Education Guaranty Corporation) has been at the forefront of social listening. Dr. Liz Gross designed a social media program that recognized the importance of online conversations as a source of intelligence, not just as a factor in follower count or engagement rate.

The inspiration for Campus Sonar came after years of speaking and writing about the strategic impact social listening can have on colleges and universities. It became clear that social listening was a difficult program for campuses to implement on their own. After a lot of research and planning, Ascendium Education Solutions realized they could help campuses develop their own social listening program.

About Ascendium, Our Parent Company

Ascendium Education Group (formerly Great Lakes Higher Education Corporation & Affiliates), is the nation’s largest federal student loan guarantor, a leading postsecondary education philanthropy and a provider of student success services for postsecondary institutions. Ascendium, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, provides information, tools and counseling to help millions of borrowers nationwide avoid default and keep the door to re-enrollment open. Ascendium’s philanthropic mission is to elevate opportunities and outcomes for learners from low-income backgrounds so they can better achieve postsecondary educational and career success. To learn more, visit ascendiumeducation.org.