Undergraduate Education will identify gaps in service where students would benefit from supplemental programs
In the last six months, Undergraduate Studies has reorganized with four pillars, or core areas, of the unit. One of the pillars is Undergraduate Education and will be restructured to include the new area of Academic Enrichment.
USF offers a broad suite of services and programs to help students succeed, and the Academic Enrichment area will supplement the broad suite of programs and services currently available. It will include two teams, “Academic Exploration” and “Summer Initiatives.”
This will be an exciting time for Academic Enrichment to work with campus partners to discover where needs and gaps are when working with students. They have some initial ideas. “There are some important populations of students who are currently falling through the cracks, like international Summer B admits and sophomores. We’re looking forward to finding creative ways to support those students,” said Kyna Betancourt, assistant dean in Undergraduate Studies.
The Summer Academic and Cultural Engagement Program (ACE) will be under the Office of Summer Initiatives and will continue to be an alternative onboarding experience which provides high touch interactions with peer mentors. Attendees of this program are often out-of-state and international first time in college students. There are opportunities to work with other populations of students who could benefit from these programs that will be explored. It is a warm, fun, and interactive introduction to USF which eases a student’s transition from high schooler to university student.
Academic Enrichment will house Maymester and Winter Session intersessions, during which students can take courses in between the traditional semesters and summer session.
Academic Exploration will include the Exploratory Curriculum program (ECM) and Major Reselection services. Exploratory Curriculum (ECM) offers academic advising and support for choosing a major to first time in college students (eligible students have less than 36 earned college credit hours)ECM students also take U-Decide, a specialized version of IDS2378, Foundations of Interdisciplinary Knowledge and Inquiry, in their first Fall or Spring semester. This course offers career exploration along with learning how to view things from different fields of study or viewpoints.
The Major Reselection area will provide support for students who may need to change majors. Students will receive guidance specific to their needs to support them through the transition to the new major. Helping these students explore options early on will provide them with the information and resources they need to avoid taking unnecessary courses and to graduate on time.
Carolina Twachtman, director of Academic Enrichment said, “I am grateful for the opportunity to lead a team of knowledgeable and caring professionals who prioritize helping and supporting students. From starting college to choosing a major to making alternative major plans, our Academic Enrichment team is highly focused on helping students to progress in their personal and academic development. Our services and programs will help students to find purpose and fulfillment in their college experience. I am excited about new opportunities for us to collaborate with our colleagues and build upon the great work we are doing in Undergraduate Studies.”