The Guardian

Student Success Center works to fight enrollment loss

Photo courtesy of Wright State University

Photo courtesy of Wright State University

Photo courtesy of Wright State University

Sarah Cavender, News Writer

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University enrollment is down 1.8 percent, according to information revealed by the Dayton Business Journal.

This information comes not long after the school had a $31 million budget cut to programs, positions and other spending.

The Student Success Center is working to increase retention at the university, and employs hundreds at their tutoring and writing center. The center also houses advising offices and centers for math and writing.

“There are challenges in different pockets,” said Tim Littell, executive director of Student Success and Associate Dean. “We’ve had increases in our college credit plus program, the high school students taking college credits, there has been a decrease in transfer students, and slight decrease in continuing college students and new students.”

Littell cites the number of returning students as one of his priorities in the work his department is doing. In his time at the university, Littell has seen the percent of retention rise from 59 percent to around 67 percent over the last several years.

“I’m excited and optimistic about the future,” Littell said, referring to the changes in budget planning and the new president.

There was a 15 percent reduction in the Student Success Center when their budget was created.

“We had to prioritize programs and services, saying what are the most important things that we do for students in the life of the academy that gets them to complete courses and gets them to stay enrolled to come back,” Littell said. “For us was targeting tutoring that students need the most help with. And academic advising. Good advising will result in good retention and good course completion.”

The Success Center is working toward creating more efficient ways to combine courses that are developmental and their core major courses. Along with the course improvements, the center has started to make advising more centralized and balance the caseloads.

“What we need to get better at is the processes in which these folk work. I’m convinced that the things that don’t work well at Wright State aren’t because of the people; it’s because the processes we developed are old or don’t work as efficiently as they could,” Littell said.

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Wright State University
Student Success Center works to fight enrollment loss