Metro State: Achieving DreamsPresentation Transcript
Recruit, retain, graduate Visions that address educational/economic realities Student-centered strategies and options that succeed Dr. Carol Lacey, interdisciplinary faculty, Metropolitan State University, St. Paul, MN Carol.Lacey@metrostate.edu http://carollacey.v2efoliomn.mnscu.edu WCET, October, 2009
Success requires opportunity “Success happens when you combine Nature, Nurture and Opportunity.” Create an environment in which individuals with natural ability and supportive families and community have the opportunity to flourish. “This definitely describes most of our students.” Metropolitan State’s President Sue Hammersmith’s inaugural address, October, 2009
Market the message Comprehensive 2008 marketing study showed that if people know about us, they will come Affordability, accessibility, quality, student-centered are major draws Metro’s website being retooled more as marketing tool to tell the story to potential students. Stepped up PLA (prior learning assessment), certification programs and other efforts
Metropolitan State’s Mission Provide quality, affordable education Target: the underserved
Communities of color (including significantly expanding immigrant populations—Hmong, Vietnamese and other southeast Asians; Somalis, West Africans, Nigerians; Latinos
First generation adult college students.
Metro student snapshot Typical student: 32 years, works part/full time 30 % students of color 95% are transfers Average student arrives with four transcripts, military students more-up to 15! Many have significant life experience learning, which could generate credits
Accelerating the vision Current economic straits contribute to nearly double digit enrollment increase at Metro State (unlike enrollment decline at many institutions). Recruitment and marketing target adults needing to complete degrees to be competitive in a tough employment market. New GI bill with benefits for military personnel and their families accelerates their enrollment.
Demographics in sync MNSCU has challenged Metro State to double (to 20,000) by 2020. National data on projected college population growth reflects Metro’s student growth: ages 27+, immigrants, minorities, community college graduates, bachelor’s degree graduates seeking new degree or continuing education.* *(Hussar and Bailey, 2009, US Department of Education, Projections of Education Statistics to 2018, USDE Institute of Education Sciences, National Center for Education Statistics, 37th edition) http://nces.ed.gov/pubSearch/pubsinfo.asp?pubid=2009062
Track record Admission gets them in the door. Enrollment starts the degree completion path. Individualized advising and degree completion design helps them stay and graduate. Result: Metro State has closed the retention and graduation rate for white students and students of color (and has highest retention rate in Minnesota State Colleges and Universities --MNSCU--system).
Individualized B.A. at a distance Accredited individualized distance degree options (one of very few fully accredited individualized bachelor’s degrees at a distance in the nation) help students design the degree completion pathway that will best meet personal educational goals (subsets include Peace Corps B.A. and aviation management B.A.). Individualized degrees must meet residency (30), upper division (40) and overall credit (120) and MTC (Minnesota Transfer Curriculum) general education requirements. All accredited, successfully completed study is accepted without “sunset” restrictions.
Crosswalks/ articulation agreements Expanded articulation agreements and degree pathway collaboration with community and technical college respect the applicability of studies there and facilitate continuation toward four-year degree completion. Peace Corps B.A. specifically builds on A.A. degree completion at community/technical colleges. Enhancing crosswalk reality: Metro State faculty teach selected upper division courses on community college campuses and Metro State programs are co-located on two community college sites: (Minneapolis Community and Technical College and Hennepin Technical College).
Prior/experiential learning assessment Nationally recognized (CAEL, etc.) leader in assessment of lifelong and experiential learning for college credit. Innovative use of eFolioMN documentation and assessment experiential learning for credit and for students’ showcasing accomplishments for potential employers. New initiatives will recruit and train PLA evaluators with special emphasis on military, firefighter training and other experiential learning not assessed by ACE.