New program helps freshmen reach academic excellence

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Deanna Pierro

Chico State implemented the new program, Raising Educational Achievement in Collaborative Hubs, in the fall. It was developed to help first-year students with their academic success.

The program offers a range of support in areas including: financial and academic planning, collaborative learning communities and tutoring.

“We fully understand the struggles that come along with entering college for the first time and have designed a program that makes navigating the university and achieving academic success much easier,” said Deanna Pierro, an achievement specialist in a welcome letter addressed to incoming students.

Members are assigned a mentor who provides the support needed throughout their first year of college, Pierro said in the letter. Members work together and can meet weekly to talk about any obstacles they’re facing.

As a way to support one another, members are placed in student groups, or hubs. Hubs consist of nine other students who communicate and interact with each other throughout the year.

Along with weekly one-on-one meetings, mentors also coordinate two “study jams” per week that all students in the hub attend.

Sherman Stacey, a freshman psychology major, has had a good experience so far in the program.

“My mentor helped me with studying because I suffer from a processing disorder,” Stacey said.

Since the program is new on campus, there are still several students who don’t know about it.

“I haven’t heard of it but I think it could be beneficial to students who struggled in high school and need help adjusting to college work,” said Roxie Beard, a freshman criminal justice major. “I took Advanced Placement classes in high school so the transition wasn’t too bad for me, but there are plenty of kids that do need help adjusting.”

Commitment is needed from both mentors and student members. Aside from the weekly meetings, study sessions and tutoring, students can also attend monthly social events put on by their mentors. These monthly events can include attending a presentation on campus or even taking a field trip to a local venue.

Although new, the program is already making its mark in student lives.

“It helped me get closer to my goal of becoming a resident advisor,” Stacey said.

Dominique Diaz can be reached at [email protected] or @dominiqueldiaz on Twitter.