Carroll University was awarded a $62,527 grant from Great Lakes Higher Education Guaranty Corporation to support Project 2016, a program that will help improve the retention and persistence rates of 40 undergraduate students in the Class of 2016.
Jeff McNamara, director of Student Success, and Susie Foster, assistant director of Student Success, will offer proactive advising meetings, ongoing academic support, and workshops designed to connect students to on-campus resources. Project 2016 begins with freshmen students, focusing on improving semester-to-semester and year-to-year retention until graduation.
"Every Carroll student has access to these programs; however, Project 2016 will ensure a comprehensive program custom-designed for the 40 students served," McNamara said. "Each activity will offer encouragement, academic and social support, and even some financial help. Project 2016 provides constant contact with a campus ally to help these students succeed."
Project 2016 builds upon existing programs established by the Office of Student Success in the past four years. In that time frame, retention has improved by more than 5 percent. Carroll’s current freshman-to-sophomore retention rate is higher than 80 percent.
Tony Morales, a freshman from Waukegan, Ill., is a first-generation student who longs to "break the cycle" and prove to his family that he can be great. He is a software engineering major in the dual-degree program; he will earn both a bachelor's and master's degree, and aspires to do so with academic honors.
"There will be obstacles, but nothing can stop me," Morales said. "I will take every opportunity and make sacrifices for my education. With Project 2016, I have no excuse not to succeed."
Carroll's funding was part of the $1.8 million awarded in Great Lakes' Postsecondary Persistence Program Grants, which supported 14 Wisconsin programs that will improve academic persistence and help students complete their degree, diploma or certificate.
Knowing that education has the power to change lives for the better, Great Lakes Higher Education Corporation and Affiliates helps millions of students pay for college and manage their student loans. Through Community Investments, Great Lakes funds programs that foster workforce development by increasing the number of students from disadvantaged backgrounds who start and complete a postsecondary degree, diploma or certificate. For additional information, visit mygreatlakes.org.
To learn more about Project 2016, contact Susie Foster at firstname.lastname@example.org.