As resilience continues to play a key role in student success, administrators at Meredith have created new ways to support students through tutoring and coaching opportunities.
Meredith’s Learning Center recently started offering embedded tutoring to provide further support to students seeking help with their courses. Embedded tutors complete the same training and offer the same support as traditional tutors, but take on a much more engaged role within classes.
“Essentially, these tutors are on an extended virtual class visit by their own election,” explains Tina Romanelli, Meredith’s Learning Center director. “They are added to the professor's Brightspace as assistants, where they can create announcements, poll the students to find out when they'd like to study together, and then lead test review sessions and/or weekly drop-in appointments, just for that class.”
The goal of the new offering is to improve the group-study culture at Meredith, a need that was initially discovered when classes moved online last spring.
“In March, the National College Learning Center Association started having weekly meetings for learning center administrators,” said Romanelli. During these meetings, the learning center administrators all shared concerns that students were not seeking out tutoring in the online environment, even though it was apparent that for many, online classes would be more difficult than in-person.
“One of the comments that stuck out to me in these meetings was the idea that campuses that had a strong group-study culture saw a better transition to online,” Romanelli said. “From there, I knew that we wanted to create a group-study culture at Meredith to help us get through the pandemic.”
So far this semester, almost 100 students have used embedded tutoring. “We’re hoping that, regardless of what happens with course delivery in the future, the culture of students who want to learn together will continue to grow,” said Romanelli.
Another new form of support for students this semester includes student success coaching. As a part of Meredith’s Plan to Finish program, student success coaches are being piloted with plans to officially roll-out the program in Fall 2021. Currently, the pilot features five success coaches who are responsible for about half of the freshmen class.
Student success coaches are professional faculty and staff members who have assumed this role in academic advising as part of their full-time workload. The pilot coaches are
Beth Hwang, Assistant Director of StrongPoints®️
Glenda Polanco, Departmental Assistant for Nutrition, Health, and Human Performance
Traci Johnson, Assistant Director of International Programs
Tisha Duncan, Professor of Education
Victoria Munn, Enrollment Management, Student Services Administrator
“There are many goals for the success coaching program,” said Alex Davis, director of academic advising. “Most importantly, we want to help students find their passion in life, define what success means to them at Meredith College, and assist them in achieving that success.”
The initiative will help more students graduate on time, allowing them to avoid additional tuition costs and higher student debt. Success coaches assist students with various challenges related to their academic journey, including identifying goals, managing commitments, creating effective habits, applying their strengths, and thinking holistically about their plan for college and beyond.
“By incorporating the StrongPoints®️ framework and utilizing proactive advising principles, coaching sessions will help students adjust to the rigors of higher education,” said Davis.
Learn more about how Meredith is helping students Stay Strong.