Nevada State College Invests In Effort To Raise Student Retention

Career College Central summary:

  • Nevada State College will participate in a national pilot program that officials say will help improve the college’s first-year student retention rate and graduation numbers.
  • Historically, an average of 65 percent of first-year students at the Henderson school return the following year, said NSC Provost Erika Beck. Officials hope to increase that rate by at least 1 percent every year. The average first-year retention rate for colleges across the country that serve similar student populations — first-generation students — is 58 percent, Beck said. Even though NSC is slightly above the national average, officials don’t see it as a reason to celebrate.
  • NSC is one of 12 colleges and universities across the country selected for a three-year pilot program, Gardner Institute’s Gateways to Completion. Through the program, the college will choose five of the most challenging “gateway courses,” which have high failure rates, and transform them in a way that will improve student performance by using data on what works and what doesn’t.
  • The gateway courses are basic classes students need to take to advance in their field of study or complete their degree, said John Gardner, president of the John N. Gardner Institute for Excellence, which seeks to improve undergraduate education and is based in North Carolina.

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