Unprecedented cross-campus collaboration leads to streamlined student support

Contact: Erin Flynn
Three students sit at a table on their laptop computers.

Student Success Hub will offer streamlined, holistic support to proactively address issues and help students thrive at Western.

KALAMAZOO, Mich.—From career exploration and well-being coaching to academic guidance and financial aid assistance, Western Michigan University undergraduate students can find holistic support in the new Student Success Hub. The new online platform within the goWMU portal connects undergraduate students with a personalized success team tailored to their needs.

"The goal is to have a system to more effectively serve our students and give them a more seamless experience while also trying to make it a more facilitated, coordinated experience for our staff behind the scenes," says Dr. Edwin Martini, vice provost for teaching and learning and dean of Merze Tate College.

Supported by the historic Empowering Futures Gift, Student Success Hub brings together student affairs, academic affairs, Merze Tate College, Multicultural Affairs for Students, the Office of Information Technology, the Office of Diversity and Inclusion and Institutional Research.

"It's an incredible collaboration that is unprecedented in my 17 years at Western," Martini says.

Beginning Thursday, March 16, undergraduate students will be able to access Student Success Hub through the tab in the top menu bar of goWMU. It will provide a single entry point to find support, which includes:

  • A personalized Student Success Team, composed of representatives from academic advising, the Navigator Network and special program staff.

  • The ability to schedule appointments with success team members, including career advisors, WMU Signature staff and navigation specialists focused on financial aid, fitness and wellness, multicultural affairs and student engagement, in one centralized location.

  • Access to advising notes from success team members.

  • Personalized success plans developed by the success team to help reach academic, personal and career goals, as well as opportunities to follow up on tasks from an appointment, such as filling out a scholarship application or trying out different study tips.

  • Access to live chat with an academic advisor or Student Success Navigator or the opportunity for around-the-clock answers to common questions from Buster Bot.

Students will also receive email alerts to highlight potential roadblocks to success from navigators or advisors. This can include alerts such as instructors filing an academic concern form, low grades, withdrawal from classes or a delay in course registration for the semester, among other things.

"College students today face more challenges and roadblocks than ever before," says Joshua Conley, a student success navigator who received his master's in educational leadership from Western in 2020. "As a navigator, I am able to help students in these situations find the resources they need to stay in college and work toward their dreams."

Student Success Hub also streamlines services for support staff by connecting divisions across campus through a single system of management that can track student support and engagement throughout the duration of a student's career at Western. This allows University professionals to better access the same tools, data and information in order to proactively identify potential challenges a student is facing and communicate with the appropriate partners in order to take action. The goal is to identify potential issues—such as missing registration or falling behind academically—early on and connect with the student to address them before they become unmanageable.

"At Western, we're striving to support students holistically so they can thrive—not just in the classroom but in all areas of their lives," Martini says. "Student Success Hub allows us to be proactive and intentional in our efforts and to really meet students where they are in order to help them navigate potential challenges and keep them on the path to graduation and a successful career."

For more WMU news, arts and events, visit WMU News online.