More on $161,000 grant for new approaches to first-year achievement

We included a link to the news release in Friday’s LOG Extra, but for the benefit of non-subscribers and those who might have missed it, here goes:

UW-Green Bay has received a grant award of $161,504 for the “Phoenix GPS Program” from Great Lakes Higher Education Guaranty Corporation. Denise Bartell, associate professor of Human Development, wrote the proposal in her capacity as director of UW-Green Bay’s Students in Transition Center, and in collaboration with Michael Stearney, dean of enrollment services. Phoenix GPS builds on promising retention strategies used in FOCUS, first-year seminars, the TOSS program and related initiatives. The new program creates a year-long support community for a group of 125 first-year students, placing them into small groups of 25, each with a faculty mentor, a peer mentor, and an academic adviser. Over the course of the year, students will:
• Complete a first-year seminar course together
• Participate in TOSS study session
• Participate in Student Success Workshops
• Engage in co-curricular and social activities
• Consult regularly with faculty mentors and academic advisers
• Complete a service learning project together.
Attention to retention is especially important at UW-Green Bay, Bartell says, where nearly two-thirds of students are from one or more of the three historically under-represented constituencies (low-income households, students of color and/or first-generation college students). In a given year, roughly 60 percent of UW-Green Bay students are first generation, 40 percent are eligible for federal Pell Grants and 10 percent are people of color. For the full story on the new Phoenix GPS program.

About that ‘GPS’ name…
The “GPS” in Phoenix GPS is both a play on the ‘ph” in Phoenix and fitting metaphor. The initials stand for Gateways to Phirst-Year Success and, says Prof. Denise Bartell, who guided development of the proposal, “The choice of a GPS as a metaphor was quite intentional. The Phoenix GPS Program is designed to help students navigate their first year of college, anticipate the roadblocks, and chart a course to first-year success… Phoenix GPS offers these students a comprehensive array of services intentionally designed to increase student success in the first year by addressing the specific barriers to success our research indicates students at UW-Green Bay face.”

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