Marian University: Moving the Retention Needle
As a Franciscan institution, Marian University has a strong sense of calling – modeling courage, passion, and compassion to help all students succeed. Providing access is one thing. Improving retention is another. And, with a student body that includes approximately 30% Pell Grant recipients, many might consider a cap on retention goals- but not Marian.
Marian’s Opportunity: How can we best support students and increase their retention?
With previous successful partnerships in strategic planning and enrollment, Marian invited Credo to facilitate a Moving the Needle (MTN) project designed to improve retention rates. MTN supports and augments an institution's retention efforts through a series of targeted workshops and modules that focus your entire campus around a holistic, community-based approach to support student success. After all, retention takes a campus.
“We wanted somebody that was going to partner with us in this journey to retention for students. Some consultants give ideas and leave. Other consultants will solve your problems if you let them run your shop for a year. Credo uncovered opportunities, gave us ideas, and then they’ve been partners with us on the journey. They’ve stayed with us. It’s a partnership,”
- Tom Enneking, Executive Vice President and Provost, Marian University
Marian’s Results: Retention Takes A Campus
As a result of the entire campus community leveraging around retention, Marian's first-time, full-time retention numbers skyrocketed from 69% to 79% since they began this project. Marian worked hard to bring administrative groups together as a team to serve the student, implemented Early Alert to identify students who are at risk sooner, and created a Center for Academic Success and Engagement. These were instrumental in the first-time, full-time retention increase, as well as positively affecting student involvement and bills being paid on time.
As a result of MTN, the Marian University community understands that retention takes a campus. Retention responsibility is now integrated across the campus experience, from paying a bill to advising and helping students consider job opportunities as they graduate.
“Whether I’m teaching English, whether I’m teaching mathematics, whether I’m cleaning the floor, or whether I’m collecting bills, everybody has taken ownership in retaining the student, getting the student to be successful, and understanding it is part of everyone's--my-- job.”
- Tom Enneking