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Survey Responses Challenges and Opportunities Matt Richey St. Olaf College.

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Presentation on theme: "Survey Responses Challenges and Opportunities Matt Richey St. Olaf College."— Presentation transcript:

1 Survey Responses Challenges and Opportunities Matt Richey St. Olaf College

2 What we asked New PIs (1-2 years) What Challenges do you face? What opportunities do you foresee? Senior PIs (3 or more years) What challenges are you facing in institutionalization? What opportunities do you foresee?

3 Some Numbers 444 responses total (answered at least one question) 625 Themed responses Challenges – Newer PIs 119 resp. – Senior PIs 108 resp. Opportunities – Newer PIs 113 resp. – Senior PIs 104 resp.

4 Challenges: New PIs

5 Challenges: Senior PIs

6 Challenges – Newer PIs Student Recruitment (40%) Grant Administration (13%) Student Engagement/Cohort Building (9%) Grant Compliance (7%) Other – Resources, Institutional Support, Faculty Recruitment, Sustainability, Partnerships, Student Opportunities, Communication, and Outreach

7 Challenges – Newer PIs Recruitment and Retention We didn't get enough time to recruit students during the first year of our project because we received the confirmation from the NSF at the very end of Spring...several of the students, though capable of success, still struggle with meeting the demands of a rigorous science- based academic curriculum, despite lots of intervention and support from the college.

8 Challenges – Newer PIs Grant Administration Perhaps the biggest challenge that we face is getting all of the various constituents at our institution to work together in a coordinated fashion. So, far, this has not been a problem, but it remains to be seen how everything will work out since our project began this year.

9 Challenges – Newer PIs Student Engagement Creating cohort is very challenging. We have students from 9 majors, all taking different classes. We are not allowed to require them to participate in activities. They are busy and have jobs and families. It is hard to find a common time to meet.

10 Challenges – Senior PIs Sustainability/Institutionalization (35%) Financial Resources (20%) Institutional Support (11%) Recruitment/Retention (10%) Other – Admin, Faculty Engagement, Grant Compliance, Communication, Student Tracking, Dissemination, Partnerships

11 Challenges – Senior PIs Sustainability/Institutionalization The challenges we face in institutionalization are related to the scale that we would like to operate at the number of students we can assist both financially and in an supportive and advisory role. We are limited in our ability to reach and inform students of the resources available that can support/assist their success..

12 Challenges – Senior PIs Financial Resources During these days of dwindling university budgets, we are not likely to receive funds post award for the valuable student- student mentoring program for our new SSTEM scholars. Budget cuts are our biggest concern. Because of the cuts, tuition is increased and the student expenses at therefore increased. This poses a real challenge as we try to provide funding for the students in STEM disciplines.

13 Challenges – Senior PIs Institutional Support Our biggest challenge in institutionalization of the program is staff support A second challenge is changing deep-rooted institutional culture - in our case it involves shifting from an internal and external identity as a 'teaching institution' and the perception among some faculty members that teaching and research are mutually exclusive.

14 Challenges – Senior PIs Tracking Our biggest challenges have come in the area of consistent student contact and ongoing student tracking. We have been struggling to try and maintain the same level of student contact and support as they enter the second year of our program. And we have struggled even more in efforts to track students as they transfer to other institutions.

15 Opportunities – New PIs

16 Opportunities – Senior PIs

17 Opportunities – Newer PIs Support for Students (22%) Recruitment and Retention (19%) Partnerships and networking (17%) Institutional Enhancement (6%) Other – Cohort Building, Institutionalizing, Student Outcomes, Resources, Mentorship, Faculty Engagement, Assessment, Impact/Dissemination

18 Opportunities – Newer PIs Support for Students The S-STEM grant has provided an excellent opportunity to focus on student success and explore best practices for supporting our best students.

19 Opportunities – Newer PIs Recruitment and Retention If we are successful at recruiting more STEM freshmen, we see them as being our future student STEM leaders, being able to help us recruit even more STEM freshmen in the future.

20 Opportunities – Newer PIs Partnerships and Networking The recruitment challenge will allows us to begin dialogues with various student outreach groups on campus that will remain far into the future. Attending conferences like this one sponsored by NSF will allow us to seek interact with similar programs and learn from their experiences.

21 Opportunities – Newer PIs Institutional Enhancement Within our university, the PI team has established stronger relationships with financial aid, admissions and student support. This grant was instrumental in establishing the first single-gender First Year Experience course in our college.

22 Opportunities – Senior PIs Recruitment and Retention (19%) Student Support (18%) Partnerships (14%) Cohort Building (9%) Other – Institutionalizing, Student Outcomes, Mentorship, Faculty Engagement, Administration Assessment, Impact/Dissemination

23 Opportunities – Senior PIs Recruitment and Retention...we now know how and can actually make a difference in the quality and quantity of STEM graduates by successfully tapping into underrepresented populations....I foresee extending to transfer students the types of academic, financial and peer support services that we've implemented for the incoming freshmen as a tremendous opportunity

24 Opportunities – Senior PIs Student Support... we've made a much stronger program for our students in terms of support for them, community among students, and career opportunities. I believe we can continue to grow these.

25 Opportunities – Senior PIs Partnerships Another opportunity is working more closely with other programs (LSAMP, STEP, McNair) to better and more effectively leverage resources.

26 Opportunities – Senior PIs Cohort Building..... good evidence that this is a useful strategy and can help to convince administration to allow alternative scheduling strategies, reserving of course sections, etc. needed to build cohort groups in courses.

27 Opportunities – Senior PIs Student Research We would like to expand that [college-wide student reseach program] program because, based on our experience with the grant, having students participate in research programs and then present their results at scientific meetings is a positive predictor of continuation in STEM careers.

28 Opportunities – Senior PIs... has transformed the culture of science students at our institution, and this will help us recruit and retain new students. We are creating paths of students. ….unique opportunity to interact with our students from their freshman year, even before some of the scholars had made a final choice on their majors.


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