WCJC receives Minority Education Innovation Award
During the recent 2013 Every Student Can Developmental Education Course Redesign Summit, hosted by the Texas Higher Education Journal and the P-20 Institute for African American Student Success, Wharton County Junior College received the Minority Education Innovation Award. The award was presented by the P-20 Institute’s national Board of Advisors to two- and four-year institutions that serve significant minority student populations and who are meeting or beating the state average in student success.
“In all areas of developmental education, to include reading, writing and math, WCJC has some of the highest numbers in the state of Texas for minority students who begin in developmental education and complete certificate and/or degree programs,” said Robin Nealy, Ph.D., WCJC department head for developmental studies. “This award is an institutional award that credits administration and faculty for the hard work they do to ensure the success of our students.”
During the two-day summit in Austin, attendees from Texas institutions of higher education discussed recent changes to developmental education and heard presentations on best practices from several institutions. Nealy, along with Ava Humme and Rebecca McElroy, shared WCJC student success initiatives that began in 2009.
Among the many initiatives the college has in place to bolster student success are seminars where students gain valuable advice on study skills, test taking, note taking, time and stress management, how to create a degree plan, career options, and more. Additionally, staff from WCJC’s academic advising, career, and counseling office visit freshman classes to introduce students to the services their department offers, as well as the college’s Learning Assistance Centers, STEM Success Center, online tutoring, and other valuable resources.
WCJC recently added new student orientations for incoming freshman. The college also developed an academic alert system whereby instructors can quickly inform a designated staff member when students are struggling academically. This allows for personalized contact with students to offer appropriate help early in the semester.
Other two-year institutions receiving the Minority Education Innovation Award were Alamo College, Galveston College, Houston Community College System, and San Jacinto College District.
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