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University of Wisconsin Madison
Powered by Publics

Holistic Student Supports

Holistic, wrap-around services designed to meet the diversity of students’ non-academic needs are essential for advancing degree completion and equity goals among Powered by Publics institutions. These institutions are working to test and scale interventions that meet students’ needs beyond the classroom. These supports are often targeted toward those who need them most – students who are low-income, minoritized, or first-generation – and are backed by literature or evidence gathered by the institutions during the course of their work together. In addition to Holistic Student Supports, Powered by Publics are also institutions working within the thematic areas of Affordability and Holistic Student Supports

Fostering a Sense of Belonging on Campus 

Students’ sense of belonging in college is a significant determinant of their success. Several clusters are working to better understand students’ perspectives and what drives these feelings of belonging – particularly for groups like men of color on campus. Some institutions are assessing campus climate and accessibility of student supports, while still others are experimenting with improvement science to decrease equity gaps through student belonging and participation, better use of data, faculty development, and affordability. For more information, contact Alcioné Frederick.

Improving Transfer Credit Efficiency

Transferring to a new college can be cumbersome and challenging for students, too often leading to lost credits and increased time in, and money spent on, school. That’s why a cluster of Powered by Publics institutions are focused on improving transfer credit efficiency in partnership with local community colleges. Universities are also experimenting with programs and approaches targeted specifically for transfers to help them navigate the four-year environment, feel a sense of belonging on campus, and shorten their time to degree. For more information, contact Gregory Thornton.

Strengthening First-Year Learning Communities

The first year of college requires many students to adjust to new routines, study habits, and social groups, as well as navigate the “hidden curriculum” of college – a particular challenge for first-generation students. The Evidence Improvement cluster is working to test and evaluate change ideas for improving first-year learning community experiences, so students have the support they need to succeed. Read the learning memo outlining their work. For more information, please contact Tia Freelove Kirk.

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