Summer 2015

Scholarship Universe

Honoree:
The University of Arizona

The financial crash of 2008 gave Arizona’s college students a one-two punch. First, the state’s financial support dropped the furthest in the country. Second, scholarship dollars grew scarcer as donors had less to give.

Sam Houston Establishing Leadership In and Through Education

Honoree:
Sam Houston State University

When Miguel Arellano Arriaga talks about Sam Houston’s Establishing Leadership In and Through Education program, his perspective is multifaceted. Arellano Arriaga, the coordinator of “SH ELITE” at the Texas university, also went through the program as an undergraduate at Sam Houston.

“It definitely was eye-opening,” he says. “They talk to you about college in high school and they tell you a little bit about what it’s going to be about, but you really don’t know until you get here.”

Drop Rate Improvement Program

Honoree:
Odessa College

Many initiatives targeted at reducing student dropout rates look at factors such as ethnicity, gender or socioeconomic status to explain academic underperformance—and then the institution develops programs to help boost graduation rates within the at-risk categories.

Coyote First STEP

Honoree:
California State University, San Bernardino

With just 1,400 beds serving a student population of 19,000, California State University, San Bernardino, is the classic commuter campus. As part of a transition to a stronger on-campus student experience, officials have launched a residential-life initiative to provide math preparation and engage students in campus life before they even begin taking classes.

Spring 2015

Career Cycle

Honoree:
University of Baltimore

A phased approach to career education empowers students to manage their job situations, come what may. Among the effects of the economic collapse of the last decade was a reorientation of the job market. For new college grads, in particular, the new complexities were profound.

Project Success

Honoree:
William Rainey Harper College

Five years ago, William Rainey Harper College in Illinois joined Achieving the Dream, an organization composed of community colleges committed to helping students complete their education. The partnership gave the college a framework and a new focus: student success and completion.r

SIUE 1st

Honoree:
Southern Illinois University, Edwardsville

Officials at Southern Illinois University, Edwardsville recently turned their retention attention to persistence and graduation rates of specific groups of students. Students at greater risk of dropping out had some common characteristics, including greater financial need, being academically underprepared and being the first in their families to attend college.

Comprehensive Student Support Program

Honoree:
Paul Smith’s College

Student retention has been a focus at Paul Smith’s College in upstate New York for several years. Administrators had routinely monitored the performance of students who were deemed “at-risk”—those who had been conditionally admitted, had relatively low high school grades and SAT scores, or who were enrolled in a major with a higher-than-average percentage of struggling students.

African-American Male Student Success

Honoree:
Central Piedmont Community College

The need to act was undeniable when officials at Central Piedmont Community College in North Carolina faced retention and graduation rates that were substantially lower for African-American males than for white males.

Student Success

Honoree:
Mitchell Technical Institute

The advisory boards of Mitchell Technical Institute’s 34 programs delivered a simple message to the South Dakota school’s administrators: You’re doing a great job turning out talented, skilled workers, but when it comes to “soft” skills, much more is needed.

Money Smarts

Honoree:
Indiana University

Student debt being the concern that it is, Phil Schuman was pleasantly surprised to discover that students at Indiana University—where he serves as director of financial literacy—were interested in learning more about their finances. But they weren’t discussing money with their friends.

EKU GURUs

Honoree:
Eastern Kentucky University

Until five years ago, Eastern Kentucky University students with questions about college life had to schlep all over campus to various departments for help. Have a roommate issue? Go to housing. Need help with financial aid? Head to the scholarship office. Falling behind in calculus? Traipse over to the math department.

Success Connect

Honoree:
University of South Carolina

The size of the freshman class at the University of South Carolina has doubled in the last 10 years, from 2,500 to 5,000-plus, making it increasingly more challenging for students to develop one-on-one relationships with faculty and staff.

Student Tailored Education Plan

Honoree:
LDS Business College

As if limited resources didn’t make advising tough enough, LDS Business College in Utah discovered that students were seeking services even before they set foot on campus.

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