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Establishing Sincere and Meaningful Family Relationships when Recruiting and Retaining Students of Color Christopher Briggs Valentina De La Fe.

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Presentation on theme: "Establishing Sincere and Meaningful Family Relationships when Recruiting and Retaining Students of Color Christopher Briggs Valentina De La Fe."— Presentation transcript:

1 Establishing Sincere and Meaningful Family Relationships when Recruiting and Retaining Students of Color Christopher Briggs Valentina De La Fe

2 Purpose Understand the importance of family relationships Sharing creative solutions to recruit minority populations Develop comfort with unorthodox approaches

3 Our Background STEM Institution High achieving student population Small pool of minority student applications Lots of competition for these students Limited financial aid packages Fundamental roles in recruitment and academic support

4 Why is Abuela so Important? 37% of minority students indicate family and parents are most influential in their 1 st year success Students with more familial ties have more academic success Family members need to have a trusting relationship with the school “Moving from parent to partner” Empowering families to be another resource for students during their college search process and first year transition Colleges should educate parents about the unique stressors students will face Parents set academic goals and expectations for their students Current student success translates into recruitment messaging

5 Direct Recruitment Efforts Different viewbooks for targeted populations Personalized family invitations to visit campus Open house and yield programs highlighting minority student communities on campus Chat night and calling campaigns Current students calling students Alumni calling parents Student recruitment teams Trained to meet with students and parents

6 Indirect Recruitment Efforts Campus Partners Seasonal meetings to keep campus partners invested and informed Connections with students who are successful at GT not just an info session Parents want to know- “How can my son/daughter thrive in this environment?” Connecting key campus individuals with families based on specific needs Students, staff, faculty, deans Identify key people on campus that make an impact Creative communications Text messaging Social media Unscripted student correspondence Personalized campus visit days

7 Indirect Recruitment Efforts Campus Partners Seasonal meetings to keep campus partners invested and informed Connections with students who are successful at GT not just an info session Parents want to know- “How can my son/daughter thrive in this environment?” Connecting key campus individuals with families based on specific needs Students, staff, faculty, deans Identify key people on campus that make an impact Creative communications Text messaging Social media Unscripted student correspondence Personalized campus visit days

8 Cultural Competency Individualized approach with each student These are not homogeneous groups Members of these demographics should also acknowledge misconceptions Institutions must identify unique challenges facing minority populations on their campus Will also equal unique solutions per each campus Responsibility of minority student recruitment does not fall solely to minority student recruiters

9 Campus Recruitment Partners Academic advising Schools and colleges Student life offices Housing Community outreach offices Alumni organizations Any office families want information from!

10 Recruitment to Graduation Although minority student enrollment is at an all-time high it still trails that of white students Students face unique challenges at every school Academic adjustment Institutional adjustment Personal-emotional adjustment Social adjustment

11 Not Helicopter Parents! Parents of minority students who maintain familial ties find more success (especially at PWIs) Parental academic goals and encouragement towards success Emotional support Social support Emphasis that education is valuable When parents are informed of their child’s academic progress and participate in university activities, students show greater levels of confidence and motivation

12 What About FERPA? Every attempt should be made to include parents in retention and academic efforts while keeping students in contact with faculty and staff Colleges provide academic support Parents provide emotional support How can parents help students with unique challenges Create an inviting community and campus culture Special programming at welcoming weekends Continuous contact with family members Formal and informal Invite parents to celebrate student success

13 What’s Happening in Atlanta? Recruitment Practices Individualized student meetings Personalized visit days Intentional connections Familial and communal language in publications Established personal relationships Recruiting families along with students Building trusting relationship between school and family to last beyond recruitment

14 What’s Happening in Atlanta? Retention Efforts Involved in recruitment OMED and Challenge program Parental integration in academic support network Address parental concerns Family involvement when celebrating student academic success Intrusive advising approach for continuous interaction

15 Other Considerations Family relationships must be institutional effort towards minority students Many minority students are first-generation students Relationship of trust is both recruitment and retention philosophy Parents are partners! Unique approaches for every institution

16 Questions?

17 Bibliography Alberta Gloria, Sharon Robinson Kurpius, Kimberly Hamilton, Marica Willson, "African American Students' Persistence at a Predominantly White University: Influences of Social Support, University Comfort, and Self-Beliefs,” Journal of College Student Development No. 40 (1999): Alfred Rovai, Louis Gallien, Jr., and Mervyn Wighting, “Cultural and Interpersonal Factors Affecting African American Academic Performance in Higher Education: A Review and Synthesis of the Research Literature,” The Journal of Negro Education No. 4 (2005): Andrea Venezia and Laura Jaeger, "Transitions from High School to College," The Future of Children No. 23 (2013): James Moore, III, Retaining African Americans in Higher Education (Sterling, Virginia: Stylus, 2001): Laird Townsend, “How Universities Successfully Retain and Graduate Black Students,” The Journal of Blacks in Higher Education No. 4 (1994): Lisa Tsui, "Effective Strategies to Increase Diversity in STEM Fields: A Review of the Research Literature," Journal of Negro Education No. 4 (2007): Michael Herndon and Joan Hirt, "Black Students and Their Families: What Leads to Success in College," Journal of Black Studies Volume 34 (2004): Monty Reichert and Martha Absher, "Taking Another Look at Educating African American Engineers: The Importance of Undergraduate Retention," Journal of Engineering Education (1997): Terrence Murphy, Monica Gaughan, Robert Hume and S. Gordon Moore, Jr., "College Graduation Rates for Minority Students in a Selective Technical University: Will Participation in a Summer Bridge Program Contribute to Success?" American Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis Volume 32 (2010): Walter Allen, "The Color of Success: African-American College Student Outcomes at Predominantly White and Historically Black Public Colleges and Universities," Harvard Educational Review No. 62 (1992):


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