Rhonda Cotham, Director of Student Success
Student success has always been a primary objective of Motlow State Community College. The 2010 Complete College Act and state and system mandates resulting from that legislation only served to increase the college's focus on the success of its students.
Motlow's 2010-2015 Strategic Plan features goals and objectives specifically related to student success. The goals focus on improving student success by increasing the number of students progressing to the next semester, transferring to a 4-year institution, or receiving a certificate or associates degree. The achievement of these goals requires campus-wide participation. Department operational plans outline how faculty and staff will actively participate in improving student success at Motlow.
The following offers a sampling of our upcoming 2011 operational success plans from orientation to completion:.
- In-person orientation better prepares first-time freshmen to begin their education at Motlow by providing students with the opportunity to become familiar with some of the individuals and resources they will need to know while working toward their academic goals.
- Welcome Week activities will offer a variety of informative and fun opportunities for students and staff to interact during the first week of fall semester classes.
- Workshops on adjusting to college life and college survival skills will be offered to incoming students.
- Improvements in academic advising will better prepare students.
- Stories of student success will be shared on the college website and other media outlets. These stories are to inspire other students to reach their academic goals.
- Secrets of student success gathered from faculty, staff and other resources will be shared with students on the college website and closed circuit internal monitor system.
- Students enrolled in beginning Humanities courses will have one cultural event (field trip) per semester to increase interest in the course and create a lifelong interest in arts.
- Natural Science student support and study groups will actively engage students with the material they are studying. They will develop relationships with others in the group while spending more time on course content.
- Social Sciences faculty will enhance faculty advisement and mentoring of students.
- Fayetteville Center will sponsor guest speakers so students may learn more about their program of student and other opportunities.
- McMinnville Center will send electronic birthday cards to McMinnville Center students and take other steps to improve communication with students.
- The Smyrna site will streamline and increase course and program offerings so Rutherford County students can complete degree requirements without traveling to other Motlow campuses.
- What do you want to be when you grow up? The Career Planning Department provides guidance through internet-based assessment tools which help students understand their career interests, skills and work values, and can be used to help students select college majors and occupations.
- Job postings and related job links are provided by Career Planning and maintained on their web page.
- Career Planning also provides valuable resources to help students create resumes, hone interviewing skills, evaluate prospective employers and explore various career fields.
- Students will be surveyed on the obstacles they have faced on the road to academic success and survey results will be shared with campus departments to find new ways to minimize obstacles or better prepare students to overcome obstacles.
In addition to these initiatives, an Ad-Hoc Student Success Committee was appointed by the president in 2010 to:
- Provide leadership that increases awareness of student retention issues
- Identify college-wide goals for student retention
- Create and assist with implementation of a campus-wide retention plan
- Determine key strategies for campus implementation
- Monitor outcomes for documentation of retention success