June 15, 2014
June 15, 2014
June 18, 2014
Two Year College Division
24.724.1 - 24.724.6
Addressing Transfer Student TransitionMany students do not effectively make the transfer from a two-year college to an engineeringcurriculum at a four-year institution. A comprehensive program has been developed to addressissues associated with the transfer process. This student success initiative, XXX-LINK, is anNSF funded program that stimulates enrollment, enhances retention in engineering programs atthe university, and increases the technical workforce. Important lessons have been learnedduring the early stages of the program.The NSF funding provides 2/3 tuition scholarships. The amount of the scholarships is especiallysignificant for transfer students who often need to work to cover their tuition costs. The programalso includes a seminar for first time students and a mentoring program, to enhance the academicsuccess of transfer students.The XXX-LINK seminar emphasizes academic success skills (such as time management andstudy skills). The students explore engineering majors through problem-based applications,gaining essential experience with engineering problem solving. The seminar also focuses onsocial involvement and interpersonal skills. Students are introduced to career andresearch/internship opportunities and to job placement skills so they are well prepared to enterthe technical workforce.An important factor in student retention is the sense of community that a student develops, whichis enhanced through the seminar. Each XXX-LINK student is assigned a Peer Mentor and aFaculty Mentor. These triads meet regularly to assist in the student’s transition to andinvolvement in the university.The program has helped to identify issues facing transfer students. Surprisingly many of thesestudents experience the same transition difficulties as entering freshmen students. For manystudents, even high academic achievers, the community college experience does not adequatelyprepare them for the rigor and pace in the engineering curriculum. Some issues can be addressedby effective advising. Others are addressed by the seminar. Additionally, we are working witharea community colleges to address some issues.Results from three classes of XXX-LINK students indicate that the program has been successfulin recruiting and retaining transfer students. 85% of the initial class is graduating this year; 50%of this class have participated in either internships or undergraduate research, and 40% of thesestudents have been elected to Tau Beta Pi. These results attest to the individual success of thestudents as well as to the success of the program.
Laier, J., & Steadman, S. J. (2014, June), Improving Transfer Student Success Paper presented at 2014 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Indianapolis, Indiana. 10.18260/1-2--20616
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