Supporting Students on the Path to Completion

Felix Cardona
Assistant Dean for Academic Affairs

 

As you know, the college has implemented an early warning system, aka STARFISH or Succeed@Hostos, to enhance our ability to support student success through timely intervention and referral to the various academic and non-academic services available on campus. This semester the system includes 100% of courses being offered.  Many of the existing early warning support systems are guided by student advisors and the division of student affairs.  However, an indispensable element of the STARFISH system is the role and feedback of faculty in identifying issues of concern and communicating them to the unit best positioned to evaluate and assist each student.  This past academic year approximately 60% of the academic department offerings participated in the system.

The appropriate intervention to support students is informed by (1) a progress survey initiated after four weeks of classes in which faculty address items on the survey; or (2) faculty initiated items of concern that are forwarded to the student’s advisor or directly sent to a particular unit (e.g., the Writing Center) for follow-up assistance.  These efforts will provide supportive interventions on behalf of students to maximize their prospects for success and eventual graduation. This academic year, we will incorporate all academic offerings in the system and, therefore, all faculty should expect to receive notice of the process for logging into the system and submitting responses, the survey announcement and the progress survey.  The survey is short, usually about 6 or 7 items and can be completed online by accessing the link on the college website from a desktop or from the link on the email announcement initiating the survey for the semester.  Faculty will receive an email notice and an announcement of the survey during the first half of the academic semester.

The system also permits faculty to raise concerns beyond the items polled in the survey, communicate with students, make direct referrals and share your calendar and office hours so that students can make appointments.  Using the flag raising feature, faculty may share specific concerns about a student and make direct referrals to student support services.  Faculty should share the main features of the system with their students and encourage them to log in to activate their account.  Students can access contact information as well as make appointments with particular offices through the system.  They can also communicate with and share concerns with advisors and faculty.  Departments will receive notification of the survey period in the coming weeks along with information on system access.   Orientations and user guides will be provided to all departments and faculty, particularly departments new to the early warning platform.

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