Continue the discussion by responding to your classmates’ posts, providing them with additional insights, perspectives, and critical thoughts on factors that influence student retention.
Respond 2 classmates discussion
below is 2 classmates discussions and the discussion you did for this assignment
speak in first person. Speak as you are talking to each classmate directly
The university of Texas at San Antonio’s retention rate has been steadily increasing from 2013 at 28% to 2019 at an all-time high of 74% for first time students pursuing a Bachelor’s degree. First time part-time students’ retention rate was 55%. The overall retention and graduation rates at 4 years was 13%, at 6 years was 35% and at 8 years was 39%.
Between 2012 through 2019 the average retention rate for UTSA was 40%. The university saw an increase in first year retention rates in 2019 to 77%, second year students to 57.6%, third year student rates at 65.3% and a 5-year increase to 14.8%.
The university has developed and implemented student success programs to increase retention and graduation rates and to be a model for student success. These include personalized advising and outreach programs, support communities for first generation and transfer students, programs that focus on Math and STEM success.
New technology that flags students who are academically at risk and a graduation help program that assists students in navigating their unique road blocks to degree completion (UTSA, 2019).
National Center for Educational Statistics (2019) Retrieved from https://nces.ed.gov/ipeds/use-the-data
Measuring freshman enrollment is one indicator frequently used to determine the success of a higher education institution in attracting students. Ensuring those students remain enrolled in the college and then graduate in 4-6 years is a more important and useful statistic.
When accepting students into college programs, there are criteria built for academic attainment. How those guidelines are derived is instrumental in determining the probability of student retention and achievement (Bullock, 2015).
Understanding and incorporating more than academic achievement are necessary when planning services for retaining and advancing strong graduation candidates. Further measures of student skills that translate to a sustainable living wage may become more important in future college accreditation and financial metrics (Miller, 2016).
Western Carolina University (WCU) has enjoyed moderate success over the last decade, but a stronger performance in the prior 5-year period (2013-2018). This is by design as the college recognized retention as an important factor, and set out to address the problem.
In 2012, a strategic plan was instituted to encourage and provide resources for students with an emphasis on increased graduation rates and overall student retention (Bullock, 2015). This multi-pronged process involved researching other schools’ retention plans and analyzing current admission practices and student services.
This data was used to develop a strategy that addressed all student services form marketing to career counseling. “Retention champions”, an early warning system for at-risk students, parental notifications, tutoring, and writing resources were just some of the ideas developed by the task force and implemented since 2015.
The result of these efforts was a 10% increase in retention rates from 2012 to 2019 reaching 80% in 2015 (Kays, 2017). The most significant number is in minority retention, which hit 85% in 2015. These numbers settled to 75% in 2018, but are still amongst the highest in the region Graduation rates at WCU were at 62% in 2018, up from 57% in 2015 (NCES, 2018). With low tuition, a wide array of majors, and a committed administration, this small public college is well-positioned to capitalize on population trends. WCU still struggles with diversity in the student body but is working to recruit, retain, and graduate students from all walks of life (Holcombe, 2019).
Have a great week all,
Bullock, T. (2015). report on First-Year Student Retention. Retrieved from
Holcombe, R. (2019, August 15). WCU listed among nation’s ‘best public college values’ by
Kiplinger. Retrieved from https://news-prod.wcu.edu/2019/08/wcu-listed-among-nations-
Kays, H. (2017, December 13). Freshman retention dips at WCU. Retrieved from
Miller, T. (2016). Outcomes-Based Funding Models and Academic Quality. Retrieved from
National Center for Educational Statistics (NCES). (2018). Integrated Postsecondary Educational
Data System. Retrieved from https://nces.ed.gov/ipeds/
Wanbaugh, T. (2018, April 27). New $500 tuition program spurs interest at 3 UNC campuses.
Retrieved from https://businessnc.com/new-500-tuition-program-spurs-interest-at-3-unc-
WCU Admissions. (2016, July 20). WCU retention rate hits an all-time high of 80 percent.
Retrieved from https://news-prod.wcu.edu/2015/09/wcu-hits-all-time-high-freshman-
Western Carolina University Graduation & Retention. (2020, January 30). Retrieved from