DIVISION OF STUDENT SUCCESS
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Proposals for Student Retention and Success
Chancellor Gilliam has challenged us to innovate and reinvent our path forward. To support that charge, the Division of Student Success welcomes proposals to improve student retention, engagement, and success.
Strengthening student engagement improves student learning outcomes and can help keep students on track. If you have a clearly defined intervention strategy that will improve at least one student success metric related to course completion, retention, persistence, degree efficiency and academic self-efficacy, submit your proposal now.
Competitive proposals will include efforts that increase student interaction and involvement, in and out of the classroom, and should consider student engagement practices that work with our new undergraduate student profile: approximately 80% of our students work, with 19% working over 30 hours a week; approximately 50% are first generation learning how to navigate college, while 73% receive some financial aid.
Selected proposals will be funded through philanthropic funds with the following goals:
- Encourage departments, small groups of faculty, or individual faculty in tailoring support to better engage current students
- Connect and coordinate the local activities with the services of our Division of Student Success
- Gather more data about our student needs and gaps
- Enhance and support faculty engagement and connection to student success efforts
Award Information & Timeline:
Awards up to $20,000 will be made from this RFP. Awards that score between 7-10 points will be funded, based on the available budget.
- Due date for proposals: November 28, 2022
- Notification: December 12, 2022
- Start date: Spring semester 2023
- End date: May 15, 2023
Proposals must be for projects that deliver direct support to students and cannot employ temporary staff or pay for course release. Projects may be tied to specific courses or provide general support targeting a specific population of students and should be institutionalized (not something that is done once but rather, can be integrated into the culture and regular practice of the class/department). All awardees will be required to submit a mid-project report and final report with associated products/outcomes, including reporting on the number of student employees hired (if applicable), the number of hours they worked, the number of students supported, and the number of hours of student support generated.
Need, Description, and Scope
Proposals should clearly define the need for the intervention and specific student success metrics. The intervention(s) should be described in detail with information on who the target audience will be and why those audiences are important to achieving desired metrics. We know student experiences in the classroom and with faculty are the most important factor in improving student learning outcomes.
Here are some examples of proactive, high impact and/or best practices for student success that would be appropriate for submission:
- Integrate student peer leaders into low performing courses to serve as a coach, mentor, and accountability partners for students (see, for example, Peer Academic Leaders and Academic Success Coaching in Student Success as a model)
- Replace high-stakes testing with low-stakes assessments throughout the semester in core courses in a particular program with help from UTLC and the University Proctoring Lab
- Create integrative learning assignments that help students directly connect the course content to their career pathway (e.g., "career moments" from your professional field into courses)
- Develop prerequisite support for low performance courses that include students (e.g., learning modules, videos, tutoring sessions, review sessions, etc.)
- Establish a mentorship program that engages students with peers, faculty, and alumni. Host involvement activities where upper-division students reach out and mentor lower-division students
- Host forums, conversations, mini symposiums on student engagement and mental health/well-being in your department/school
Metrics and Evaluation Plan:
All awardees will be required to track and report a particular metric appropriate for your intervention. Proposals should therefore discuss plans for collecting data to report on the metric as well as strategies to analyze the data collected.
A desired outcome of this RFP is to fund innovative approaches to student support that improve course completion, retention, an/or persistence. The funding to test these strategies is one-time funding and will not be available to sustain practices. A sustainability plan should be clearly defined as part of the proposal.
Results of these innovations will be shared with key stakeholders across the University and may be used as the basis for external grant proposals. If possible, authors should consider how they can share results with the campus, alumni, and professional organizations, as well as distributed through conference presentations, papers, and other channels.
- Proposals should provide the following:
- Describe the student success goal you are trying to achieve and provide evidence to justify the need/importance.
- Describe what success looks like to you/your team including expected outcomes, artifacts and/or deliverables.
- Describe how you will develop sustainable pathways such as processes or structures.
- List the project contact lead responsible for overseeing the project as well as a complete list of the project team including their key responsibilities, roles, and activities
- Provide a line-item budget and budget narrative
- A letter of support from the Chair/Head/Director should accompany each proposal.
There is a three-page limit for the proposal not including references, the line-item budget, and budget narrative.
Authors of successful proposals will have an initial planning meeting with the Division of Student Success before the end of the Fall 2022 semester. A mid-project report will be required by February 28, 2023, with a final report due at the end of the project, no later than June 15, 2023.
Proposals should be submitted to the Division's Proposal Box Link
Contact us with your questions about the proposal and student success resources and supports:
- Regina McCoy, Associate Vice Provost for Retention & Student Success
- Dr. Samantha Raynor, Assistant Vice Provost for Strategic Student Success Initiatives
Evaluation criteria are as follows:
Proposal fit and feasibility
- Clear identification of a student success metric appropriate for your intervention
- Ability to institutionalize change
- Reasonableness of the budget
- Clear description and feasibility of milestones
- Feasibility of planned project deliverables
- Plan to disseminate findings
- Strength of data analysis of any current/control intervention (if applicable)
Sustainability of the Project
- Identification of project aspects that can be sustained OR
- Plan to realign funding to sustain the project if it is successful