* This is part of a series authored by leaders with varying perspectives on the benefits of USF being "One University Geographically Distributed."
By Paul Dosal, Vice President for Student Success, Tampa Campus
Patti Helton, Regional Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs and Student Success, St. Petersburg Campus
On July 1, 2020, the student success movement at the University of South Florida will be consolidated across three campuses, managed by a team of caring professionals charged to deliver equitable and high-quality programs, practices, policies, and technologies to all undergraduate students. The combined resources, expertise and commitment of three campuses will elevate student performance on key metrics, including first-year retention rates and four- and six-year graduation rates. At the same time, the USF team will maintain parity in persistence and completion rates by race, ethnicity, and socio-economic status. The consolidated USF will remain a national model for student success, known for innovative practices that elevate performance and eliminate achievement gaps.
All undergraduate students will benefit from a multi-campus culture built on two fundamental principles that have elevated USF performance in its drive to national prominence:
· We believe that every student admitted to USF will succeed.
· Student success is everyone’s responsibility.
Every person and every unit on all three campuses will play a role in providing the supports our students need on their path to graduation. Maintaining or creating collaborative teams that operate in a culture of care that spans all three campuses will accelerate already impressive gains in student success.
In this environment, all students will benefit from a collaborative student success movement that will
· Expand student access to academic programs that aren’t currently located on all three separately accredited campuses
· Expand student access to programs and services, including but not limited to recreation and wellness facilities, counseling, coaching, intra-mural sports and activities, student organizations, and events,
· Facilitate student “flow” across three campuses by allowing students to take courses on different campuses,
· Offer greater opportunities for students to engage in high impact practices, including but not limited to education abroad, internships, service learning, and undergraduate research
· Expand opportunities for students to learn from and engage with nationally prominent research professors,
· Create a dynamic and unified comprehensive welcome and Orientation program that introduces all new students and families to the resources available for ongoing student success,
· Empower students to become active and conscientious global citizens by continuing to build an inclusive environment on each campus that mirrors our passion and commitment to Diversity and Inclusion,
· Provide Veterans with greater opportunities for academic success, personal growth, and professional development through a seamless transition from military life to campus life,
· Reduce student debt by accelerating time to degree and providing enhanced financial education services,
· Enrich the value of a University of South Florida degree