While working with colleges and universities across the country on a daily basis, we often hear many of the same challenges over and over—specifically concerns centered around student success and retention.
Even though the populations, initiatives, and programs can vary drastically, on a national level there are some staggering statistics. In fact, a U.S. News article stated that “As many as 1 in 3 first-year students won't make it back for sophomore year.”
This is a statistic that colleges simply can’t ignore, and leaves many wondering what causes so many students to cut their college experience short. Colleges need to take a hard look at what can be done to turn the statistic around, and to do that, it’s necessary to look at WHY students are dropping out. While there can be a variety of factors involved, here’s a few that seem to come up regularly:
A recent article from The Chronicle of Higher Education provides several insights on the challenges that many students face during their freshman year of college. Although each student’s experience can be very different, there are emotional readiness factors that seem to overlap.
"Several factors can contribute to "emotional readiness," including students’ ability to adapt to new environments, handle negative emotions in constructive ways, and forge healthy relationships. The survey found that the more prepared a student is for the emotional challenges of college — and for the anxieties that might come with it, such as covering expenses, making friends, and dealing with increased independence — the better and more successful that student’s college experience is."
According to the article, these factors can be the difference between a student feeling confident and excelling in their classes or a student falling behind and dropping out entirely.
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