Building bridges to student success.

Author:Bendici, Ray
Position::Models of Excellence



Student success is inherently at the center of every institution's mission, and this round of Models of Excellence showcases eight initiatives dedicated to supporting that goal, from before a student's first class right through--and beyond--graduation. Honorees include efforts aimed at improving academic performance as well as boosting life skills that transcend the classroom.

Two honorees feature bridge-type programs targeting students who either need academic help or are from socioeconomically challenged backgrounds. One school has created a 12-day immersion for incoming students who have been admitted on a probationary basis that includes developmental mathematics and English courses in addition to college-orientation activities. Another school goes a bit further, establishing a two-year program for first-generation, socioeconomically disadvantaged students where each student is monitored and participates in regular self-assessments, ensuring that they stay on course to graduation.

Broadening student horizons beyond their own campus is another common theme. By establishing its own YouTube channel featuring open-source courses for math placement test preparation and general subject knowledge, one institution has connected with more than 35,000 students from 182 countries--and won a $1.8 million grant from the U.S. Department of Education....

To continue reading