University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point has been awarded a $1.8 million federal
grant to enhance academic services to help more students succeed.
Title III grant from the U.S. Department of Education will fund the program
Strengthening Academic Success: More Graduates for Wisconsin. The
five-year grant begins Oct. 1. It will improve student success through
coordinated, high-impact academic support services. Five new positions will be
funded, aimed at helping at-risk students stay in school and complete degrees.
Title III grant will include enhanced tutoring, intensive academic advising and
targeted career counseling. In addition, a new “conditional admit” retention
program will be launched. The grant will also fund 32 peer tutoring leaders and
peer advising mentors, student positions. These services will be packaged for
at-risk students and available to all UW-Stevens Point students.
factors that are obstacles to success for some students include being low
income, first generation attending college, testing into remedial math, having
ACT scores below 20, not having declared a major or being on academic
of UW-Stevens Point students receive some form of financial aid, and 34 percent
are eligible for Pell grants. Among incoming students, 47 percent are the first
generation in college.
Point retains about 82 percent of students from their first year of college to
their second year. While this retention rate exceeds state and national
averages, we want to do better, said Chancellor Bernie Patterson.
“The stretch goal I have set is to improve this to 87 percent.”
grant goal is to increase retention of first-to-second-year students by 0.5
percentage point each of the five grant years. Another goal is to improve
four-year graduation rate 3 percentage points by year five of the program.
recent strategic planning process identified the need for strong,
well-coordinated, seamless academic support services, noted Kathy Davis,
executive director of academic success. She will oversee the grant program.
traditional funding sources have eroded, university staff has explored other
sources to meet student needs. Title III is one aspect of the federal No Child
Left Behind Act of 2001. The grant is part of a Strengthening Institutions
Program (SIP), which helps higher education programs expand their capacity to
serve low-income students by providing funds to improve and strengthen an
institution’s academic quality, institutional management and fiscal stability.