Tougaloo College is working diligently to make enhancing student retention the main purpose around which programs and activities are centered. The roots of attrition lie not only in students and the situations they face, but also in the atmosphere of the educational settings in which we ask students to learn. Therefore, we strive to create and maintain an environment that fosters retention by incorporating expectation, advice, support, involvement and learning.
Students are more likely to persist and graduate in settings that expect them to succeed. No one rises to low expectations. Students are affected by the campus climate and by their perceptions of the expectations of faculty and staff for their individual performance.
Advising Students are more likely to persist and graduate in settings that provide clear and consistent information about institutional requirements and effective advising.
Students are more likely to persist and graduate in settings that provide academic, social, and personal support.
Students are more likely to persist and graduate in settings that involve them as valued members of the institution and have frequent contact with faculty and staff.
Students are more likely to persist and graduate in settings that foster learning. Students actively involved in learning spend more time on task. These students are more likely to learn and, in turn, more likely to remain committed to timely matriculation.
A strong emphasis is placed on first-year students and their transition socially, personally, and academically to college. However, OSPAS continues to assist students as they progress from year to year, with programs that address concerns regarding financial aid, academics, course loads, and campus adjustment. We are available to listen to student concerns and assist, advise, or guide students to the right person or office on campus. We work in close collaboration with all other departments on campus including Academic Support Programs, Admissions, Bursar, Financial Aid, Registration and Records, and Student Affairs to offer personalized attention to our students.
Before failing or dropping a class, or worse, opting to leave school, students are advised to visit OSPAS. OSPAS staff can help students to:
• Determine the root of the problem
• Assess personal strengths and limitations
• Develop a personal action plan • Sign students up for academic support assistance
• Learn college success and study strategies
• Find out about other resources for student success
• Connect to campus life
• Develop a personal support network of guidance and advocacy
Remember that for the majority of people, college is not easy. Although chances are that attending college will turn out to be one the hardest things you will ever do, consider the long term financial and personal advantages of having a post-secondary education. Simply put, education ultimately pays in higher earnings and lower unemployment. Feel free to call or come by the office behind the Blackmon building. We are located in the old Social Science Building.
Gloria McCray Watson, MPPA
Director of OSPAS