The academy draws from a broad array of research and practice-based literature, interactions with notable scholars specializing in the first college year, and various data sources, participants will conduct an institutional audit and begin to develop a plan aimed at improving the experience of students in the first college year.
Drawing from over forty years of experience, the Gardner Institute has tapped the considerable knowledge of our founders, John N. Gardner and Betsy Barefoot, and our CEO Drew Koch. Their wisdom is further augmented by our facilitators: Brent Drake, Stephanie Foote, Sara Stein Koch, and Felita Williams, all of whom bring with them a wealth of scholarly and practical knowledge.
The Academy draws on your institution’s publicly available Integrated Postsecondary Data System (IPEDS) data to help institutional teams see disaggregated outcomes for their students.
Data is provided in easy-to-read visualizations that are specifically constructed for this academy. The visualizations powerfully highlight differences and guide institutional teams toward action.
Institutional teams will also receive data visualizations that allow them to compare their own outcomes to those of institutions that have a similar admissions, enrollment, and endowment profile.
Institutional teams will complete an audit of policies, practices, and programs available on their campus targeted at first-year student success. They will focus on the diversity of your first-year students and the differential impacts (e.g., equity gaps) seen across systems of higher education and at your institution.
At the end of the Academy, your team will be prepared and committed to the development of a plan to improve the experience of students in the first college year.
Fees are based on undergraduate enrollment as determined by College Navigator. Fees are assessed per institution, not per individual participant.
Applications are currently being accepted for Fall 2023 and Spring 2024 cohorts. You can apply at this link.
Applicants are accepted on a first come, first served basis; subject to approval. Early registration is recommended. Fall 2023 Cohort Applications are due by September 15, 2023
Your institution has the option to create a team or utilize an existing team or committee. The individuals will vary by institution, a successful team is one most likely to design and create an equity-focused retention process at your institution.
The synchronous meetings will begin on October 17 at 1 pm ET.
Other meeting days and times will be shared with registered participants once they are confirmed.
Depending on the size of your team and how the work is divided we estimate approximately 3 -5 hours per week for the 4 week Academy.
We recommend a minimum of 3 and a maximum of 8. We can accommodate a larger team.
Module 0: Start Here
Module 1: How well do you know Your First-Year students?
Module 2: What does the first year academic experience look like?
Module 3: How do you create a supportive, inclusive, and responsive environment?
Module 4: What happens after the first year?
You will receive an application confirmation email within 1 week of applying. An agreement will be sent to the person designated in the application. Once the agreement has been signed you will receive further information from the Academy facilitators. Please contact email@example.com with any questions.