Faculty, staff and students who attended a series of workshops during Fall Conference learned about Cal Poly Pomona traditions, new opportunities to increase course sections, supporting student success, and improving the student experience and advising.
Academic Plans for the Student Success Fee – Additional Bottleneck Courses
For some students, the only thing between them and academic progress is being unable to register for a single class that’s in high demand. If that class is a prerequisite for other courses, students can find themselves falling further and further behind. A new initiative by the university aims to eliminate as many of these so-called “bottleneck courses” as possible.
The new Student Success Fee, which was approved by the Chancellor’s Office earlier this year, is providing more than half a million dollars this year to fund additional course sections. That amount will grow to $720,000 next year and $765,000 the year after that.
Academic Strategic Plan 2.0
The Academic Affairs Planning and Evaluation Committee has outlined its vision for the next incarnation of the Academic Strategic Plan, a document that contains a series of academic goals and objectives for the university. The new plan is intended to have specific, measurable goals, and more closely align with the University Strategic Plan. The committee intends to craft the new Academic Strategic Plan over the next three years and will be seeking input from faculty through surveys, meetings and open seats on the committee itself.
The Kellogg Legacy Project Endowment and the State Government-Funded Efforts to Improve Student Success
Faculty and staff members can win funding from the Kellogg Legacy Endowment for classroom innovations and programs that could increase student success. The endowment generates about $2 million annually to help students who are disadvantaged or need additional support.
Among the programs that have received funding are the Renaissance Scholars, the Provost’s Awards for Excellence, Summer Bridge, the Kellogg Lecture Series and initiatives that provide undergraduates research opportunities.
In addition, the state budget allocated $10 million to the CSU for initiatives that will increase student success and reduce course bottlenecks. CSU Chancellor Tim White has allocated an additional $7.2 million for student success programs.
For more information, contact the Division of Academic Affairs at (909) 869-4051.
Academic Plans for the Student Success Fee – Improving the Student Experience
One of the goals of the Student Success Fee is to improve the classroom experience. The fee will provide $85,000 per quarter to replace classroom equipment or modernize specialized equipment, plus $70,000 per quarter to introduce innovative approaches to instruction.
Faculty, staff and administrators discussed how the new funding may be used and distributed. They shared ideas on the types of requests that should be eligible for funding, a reasonable timeline for proposal submission and review, and criteria to evaluate the proposals.
The New Advising Structure – A Guided Path to Student Success
The structure of advising is changing in the coming years, with more advisors, better coordination within colleges, college-based advising centers and new software. Peer advisors and group advising will be better utilized. Faculty and staff advisors will have clearly defined roles. The Student Success Fee will fund the improvements, beginning with $405,000 this academic year and up to $810,000 in 2015-16. During workshop, participants commented on the plan, asked questions and suggested other improvements.
The Graduation Initiative – How Far Have We Come and Where Do We Go?
Those who attended the Graduation Initiative workshop on Sept. 23 received an update on progress made and a description of projects planned for the new academic year.
Associate Professor Teshia Roby, co-chair of the Graduation Initiative steering committee, said the efforts of the past three years are bearing fruit and are reflected in recent data that show in increase in the percentage of students who graduate within six years, the initiative’s benchmark. She pointed out, however, that increasing the graduation rate of underrepresented minority groups in relation to the overall student population remains an elusive goal. With that in mind, a Resources Roundup has been added to the to-do list. The newest project will extend outreach to underrepresented minority groups by identifying those who do not already receive information about the many resources on campus that can simplify to road to graduation.
Other projects, including the enrichment of difficult courses and the development of learning communities, remain in force.
75th Anniversary – Bronco Traditions Workshop
Students come to Cal Poly Pomona to get an education, but it’s the traditions that bond them to the university community. Traditions teach and reinforce institutional values, and they even play a role in students staying the course to graduation. A workshop on Bronco Traditions identified some of them that the community holds dear, and documented new possibilities as well.
A committee to explore traditions and their important role on campus is forming and ideally will include members of every college and division.
(Top photo: Associate Provost Claudia Pinter-Lucke leads a workshop discussion on the new advising structure for the Student Success Fee during Fall Conference. Bottom photo: Faculty and staff members come up with ideas during the Academic Plans for the Student Success Fee workshop during Fall Conference.)