By Kris Lovekin
UCR’s success in graduating low-income students earned the campus some ink on the front page of the Chronicle of Higher Education recently. But that doesn’t mean the campus can rest.
In fact, the subject of making sure students succeed and continue on to graduate has been getting a lot of attention on campus lately.
UCR’s Academic Senate recently endorsed a 99-page report created over a period of 10 months by a Student Success Task Force chaired by Dean Reza Abbaschian.
The report makes these recommendations:
• Create first-year learning communities.
• Provide training and additional administrative support for student advisors, including a job classification that has a higher rate of pay and recognition for success.
• Make use of information gained from current student surveys to make changes in UCR programs.
• Provide advising resources for students who are undeclared.
• Get the word out about the campus’ “first-year experiences” such as CHASS Connect, CNAS Scholars and the University Honors Program.
• Evaluate the effectiveness of the Freshman Discovery Seminars.
• Increase the use of instructional technology in the classrooms.
• Raise more money for scholarships.
• Make sure the campus Learning Center reports to the Vice Provost of Undergraduate Education.
• Integrate the UCR libraries into instructional support and student success programs and initiatives.
• Create a Center for Instructional Innovation to draw together tools for effective instruction.
“The campus is working quickly to implement these recommendations and we are already starting to see results,” said Abbaschian. “I am proud of the work of this group and I think it will make a difference in the long-term success of UC Riverside.”
In addition to Abbaschian, members of the Student Success Task Force included Executive Vice Chancellor Ellen Wartella, Vice Chancellor Jim Sandoval, Assistant Vice Chancellor Susan Allen Ortega, Steve Angle, former dean of the College of Natural and Agricultural Sciences, Associate Professor Lynda Bell, Assistant Vice Provost Pam Clute, Associate Dean David Fairris, Vice Provost Andrew Grosovsky, University Librarian Ruth Jackson, Professor Richard Luben, Professor Tim Paine, Associate Vice Chancellor Charles Rowley, Assistant Executive Vice Chancellor & Provost Carolyn Stark and Assistant Director of Human Resources Marilyn Voce.
A full report is available on the Web at www.chancellor.ucr.edu/documents/success.html.