Project
RvR: Retention via Relationships
Description
This project seeks to support students by creating a mechanism for proactive faculty outreach to encourage individual students to register and help them connect with resources that might be vital to their continued enrollment and success.
Data Foundations
2-Year Institution
PWI
Oregon
Gina Szabady
Professor and Writing Program Coordinator
Cathy Thomas
Institutional Researcher
Evidence

The project utilized disaggregated course-level retention data to identify equity gaps. It leveraged advising and coaching resources that are available at the college. A focus was on working with managers in relevant areas to help them understand how barriers (e.g. systems that require students to locate the appropriate webpage to get information about advising, navigate through multiple systems to locate contact information, and work with sometimes significant time constraints to set up an appointment with an advisor) can be mitigated.

Goal

Address equity gaps to improve retention rates via development of a mechanism for proactive faculty outreach to encourage individual students to register and help them connect with resources that might be vital to their continued enrollment and success.

Lessons Learned

Supporting development of personal relationships has the power to change material conditions. Connecting individual members of the faculty with individual managers and classified staff has helped create a sense of trust that enables collegial and productive communication. To scale and sustain the work, the college will move communication into an all-employee newsletter or faculty email group to ease hands-on effort to transmit data, leverage visibility of messaging to publicly celebrate folks who have been successful at retaining students, and find ways to continue to support relationship building and direct person-to-person communication to maintain the important networks created in 2023.