APLU’s Council of 1890 Universities hosted the 2015 HBCU Student Success Summit in Atlanta, Georgia on June 24-27. More than 100 HBCU senior administrators, faculty, staff, and students participated in this year’s summit and shared best practices to improve student success at HBCUs.
“The attendees were excited and engaged in the topic, given the implications of student success for HBCUs and their capacity to advance degree completion,” said RoSusan D. Bartee, APLU interim vice president for Access and Success. “Dialogue consistently revealed the need for the implementation of varied, strategic approaches to improve student success. There remains an ongoing need for the community of HBCUs and constituents to engage this critical topic and related ones to further institutional excellence.”
The HBCU Student Success Summit featured four pre-conference workshops and a presidents and chancellors luncheon covering financial aid, student recruitment, enrollment management, and fundraising. Institution leaders and personnel discussed and shared effective strategies in the areas of recruitment, retention, academic support, graduation, remediation, technology, undergraduate research, financial aid, and K-12 partnerships.
The HBCU Student Success Summit also showcased speakers and companies dedicated to improving student success with an onsite exhibition hall section displaying products and services appealing to higher education leaders and personnel.
One of the primary goals of the summit was to give HBCUs the tools and strategies needed to increase student retention and graduation rates.
“The Summit provided HBCU administrators, faculty, and staff the opportunity to engage in robust dialogue about what works in advancing student success,” said Lorenzo L. Esters, senior program director, National Engagement and Philanthropy, USA Funds. “USA Funds was pleased to support these conversations to drive higher education innovation by challenging existing assumptions, programs and structures, and to address the challenges of today’s students. Ultimately, the success of the conference will be measured by the widespread adoption of the exemplary practices discussed at the Summit.”
The APLU Office for Access and Success (OAS) served as the primary coordinator of the summit. It was generously sponsored by 10 organizations, including USA Funds; American Association of State Colleges and Universities (AASCU); Royall & Company; ETS Success Navigator; Rafter, Inc.; Lumina Foundation; National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA); U.S. Education Delivery Institute; Peace Corps; and the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST).