Success @ WMU update

Campuswide efforts underway to ready Success @ WMU for fall rollout

Monday, Feb. 19, 2018

Project directors, an advisory committee, a series of task forces and a firm timetable are all now in place to begin implementation of Success @ WMU, one of two campuswide transformational initiatives announced by WMU President Edward Montgomery in January.

Success@WMU is a large-scale campus commitment to build on past WMU success with learning communities. The initiative ensures that all new undergraduate students have access to a learning community led by a peer leader assisted by faculty and staff. The learning communities are intended to not only help welcome and orient new students, but also aid them in building skills and making the connections essential for success in college.

With a firm goal of having the initiative ready to offer to some 5,500 new students for fall 2018, Administrative Lead Keith Hearit and Project Co-director Monica Liggins-Abrams are coordinating the work of a 13-member advisory group and 10 different task forces charged with quickly developing elements of the overall initiative.

"We're using a "flat organization" structure," Hearit says. "The work will be done at the task force level, with each group charged with a discrete purpose, utilizing existing expertise and leadership from around the campus community. 

Hearit says volunteers from the campus community are being sought for work at the task force level. The 10 task forces already in place are charged with the following areas of focus.:

  • Examine existing peer mentoring programs to develop requirements and activities.
  • Develop role of peer leaders and a curriculum to shape interactions with new students.
  • Hire 100-150 peer leaders by the end of spring semester.
  • Adapt Success @ WMU for transfer students to include multiple types of interaction.
  • Examine in-course learning assistant models and program integration for adaptation to Success @ WMU.
  • Develop peer mentor training that will culminate in a week-long training program in August.
  • Develop a faculty/staff Signature program that will include Signature themes.
  • Craft a plan for research, assessment and learning outcomes for the initiative and its elements.
  • Develop branding, marketing and communication strategies for consistent messaging.
  • Adapt Success @ WMU for international students in a way that encourages interaction with domestic students. 

Those interested may nominate themselves or others with the understanding that task force membership requires a commitment of two to five hours of time per seek, Hearit says. Nominations should include name of nominee, the task force topic/s of interest and a brief outline of the nominee's expertise. Submissions must be made no later than Feb. 23. Those selected for each task force will receive an invitation and an outline of the time commitment, specific work tasks and timelines.

Members of the initiative's advisory committee are:

  • Kate Bates
  • Susan Caulfield
  • Laura Darah
  • Katie Easley
  • Jayne Frayley-Burgett
  • Tomika Griffin-Brown
  • Evan Heiser
  • Michelle Metro-Roland
  • Randy Ott
  • Lindsey Palar
  • David Reinhold
  • Christopher Sligh
  • Tiffany White
  • Toni Woolfork-Barnes