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A Model for Success

St. Mary's College of California

The name—Student Success Office—really says it. It’s a new holistic approach to supporting students, launched this fall at Saint Mary’s, that combines a collaborative network of people, individual coaching, and high-tech tools to help students thrive and succeed.

“The aim of the Student Success Office is to provide students with access to the resources and mentoring they need to build academic, personal, and professional success in college and beyond,” said Assistant Vice Provost for Student Success Dr. Tracy Pascua Dea, who leads the newly established SSO that combines five reconfigured offices under one umbrella—Student Engagement and Academic Success (SEAS), Career and Professional Development Services, the High Potential program, Student Disability Services, and the Tutorial and Academic Skills Center.

Core to SSO’s approach is a one-on-one coaching program, in partnership with InsideTrack—a San Francisco company offering expertise in higher education coaching, analytics, and technology. This year, for the first time, every incoming student (first year and transfer) is assigned a SEAS coach who will meet with them at least twice a semester, help them map out their individual path, track progress, introduce resources and opportunities, and make referrals to SSO colleagues and others on campus.

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Press Releases

Ivy Tech Expands Coaching Program to Further Drive Student Success

INDIANAPOLIS (August 23, 2016) — Ivy Tech Community College, the nation’s largest singly accredited statewide community college system, today announced that it has expanded its student success coaching partnership with InsideTrack, building on years of sustained improvement in student outcomes. The Ivy Tech coaching program originally focused only on students in Indiana’s 21st Century Scholars program, which offers scholarships to qualified low-income, first-generation students. The community college system is now expanding coaching to include all first-time African American students to help address historic achievement gaps and support the transition to college.

In the inaugural 2014-2015 academic year, the Ivy Tech coaching program led to an increase in first-year Scholar persistence at the 32 Ivy Tech Community College campuses of 8.8 percentage points, from a historical average of 36.9 percent to 45.7 percent. The program is on track to show similar gains for the 2015-2016 academic year.  In addition, the program has deepened administrator, staff and faculty understanding of the student experience.

By working with coaches to set long-term goals and map out success strategies, students are better able to balance their academic work with personal, professional, and financial commitments.  After serving approximately 2500 students over the first two years, the program will serve an additional 1,700 students this fall.

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