In a strategic move to boost student success, Stanislaus State recently secured a $3 million Title III grant from the U.S. Department of Education that will bolster the University’s commitment towards increasing student retention and re-enrollment.
Launching the Pandemic Recovery with Equity (PRE) Initiative, the University aims to restore its enrollment, retention and completion rates to pre-pandemic levels. The initiative will expand Stan State’s capacity to support low-income and underrepresented students, ensuring more equitable educational opportunities for academic success.
The grant’s impact will not only be felt by current students but will extend a welcoming hand to those who have temporarily stepped away from their education.
“Securing a $3 million Title III grant is a monumental achievement for Stanislaus State and reflects our unwavering commitment to student success,” said Vice President for Student Affairs Christine Erickson. “This is a huge win that will empower us to support initiatives aimed at tackling enrollment and retention challenges head-on.
“With this support, we will be able to do even more to help our students succeed and stay in school. We are committed to making sure every student has the best chance to do well, and this grant will make a big difference in reaching that goal.”
- Christine Erickson, Vice President for Student Affairs
Efforts to increase re-enrollment ensure that students who have paused their education have support to resume and succeed in their academic pursuits.
“We wanted to place more focus on outreach to students who were withdrawing their enrollments into future semesters,” said Tracy Myers, a student retention coordinator in the Office of Student Equity and Success. “It has provided valuable insight into the obstacles faced by students and identified the barriers acting as roadblocks.”
Stanislaus State has been actively engaged in various initiatives aimed at bolstering student retention and re-enrollment efforts.
“Starting this fall, every incoming first-year student was assigned to an advisor to receive support about advising and connecting with campus services,” Myers said. “Academic Affairs also recently hired an associate vice president for strategic enrollment management to focus on scheduling and course enrollment management.”
The funds from the grant will be strategically used to achieve specific goals:
- Expanding retention and re-enrollment programs
- Providing guidance to all first-year students
- Implementing a campuswide early alert system for faculty to share concerns about a student
- Revising educational planning tools
- Integrating mental health and career services into first year advising
“A returning student will be able to schedule a time to discuss their personal goals and challenges,” Myers said.
One of the biggest hurdles in retaining students is the diverse and unique challenges that individual students face. Balancing work, family responsibilities and education can be overwhelming for many.
This additional funding will enable more tailored support and flexible solutions for students' varied circumstances.
The infusion of new funding is another way Stan State is making strides to ensure no student is left behind and will enhance the accessibility and attainability of an education.