Hard-working students meet academic challenge

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Photo of Trista .

Kelly

Photo of Raymond .

Enbody

KALAMAZOO--Two Western Michigan University students met a challenge to get top grades for a year and as a result, were treated to a March 28 lunch with WMU President John M. Dunn.

Raymond Enbody from Crystal, Mich., and Trista Kelly from Lawrence, Mich., won the challenge, which was put to students participating in the TRIO Student Success Program.

Kelly is a senior majoring in special education: cognitive impairment and learning disabilities who will be graduating this month. Enbody is a sophomore majoring in criminal justice who expects to graduate in April 2014.

Student Success Program participants were challenged in 2010 to obtain a cumulative 4.0 grade point average for a minimum of one academic year. Enbody and Kelly are the first to meet the challenge and win lunch with the president in recognition of their accomplishment.

The Student Success Program helps first-generation, income-eligible college students and/or students with disabilities complete their bachelor's degree and transition to graduate school and professional life. Offered at WMU since 1984, it is part of the Center for Academic Success Programs and is supported by grant funds from the U.S. Department of Education.

Dr. Charlotte Giscombe, director of the Student Success Program, says the program provides services to 210 students each academic year. Services include priority registration, scholarships, job and leadership opportunities, tutoring, mentoring and academic advising.

"Most importantly, participants have a chance to be a part of a learning community that guides and supports them and helps them develop a can-do attitude," Giscombe says. "Our students also can register at no cost for one of our First-Year Experience seminars and a How To Market Yourself class."

Giscombe notes that WMU's Student Success Program has a six-year graduation rate of 67 percent and in the 2010-11 academic year, had an 89 percent retention rate. In addition, 89 percent of participating students in 2010-11 were in good academic standing, with 51 percent maintaining a 3.0 or better cumulative GPA.

Attending the challenge luncheon along with Kelly, Enbody and Dunn were Giscombe and Dr. Randy Ott, director of the Center for Academic Success Programs. For more information, contact Giscombe at charlotte.giscombe@wmich.edu or (269) 387-4450.