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Worcester State to Receive Funds to Boost Student Academic Performance

October 3, 2012
By: Worcester State University News

Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick has announced that Worcester State University has been awarded a $66,766.33 Performance Incentive Fund, as part of $2.5 million in grants announcement at an event at UMass Boston Tuesday, October 3.

These grants will support new and existing programs to improve college readiness and attendance of high school graduates, as well as college graduation and student success rates.

“It is critically important that we work to support the success of all of our students so that they can graduate in a timely manner and pursue careers or graduate school,” said President Barry M. Maloney. “These funds allow us to reinforce our efforts and reach more students.”

The funds will be used at Worcester State University to support a sophomore summer program designed to retain students and to invest in assessment and analytics technology to retain more students.

“We are very pleased that the Vision Project Performance Incentive Fund process continues to support retention and graduation efforts here at Worcester State,” said WSU Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs Charles Cullum. “Over the two years of funding for the 2011 Vision grant and the funding for this new 2012 Vision grant, Worcester State has received the second highest amount of total funding—over $454,000—among all state universities.”

Worcester State University’s strategic efforts are aimed at advancing specific Vision Project goals and eliminating disparities across all goals. The Sophomore Summer Program will continue to increase the success and retention of these at-risk students. There is a growing body of research that indicates that the sophomore year is critical to student success. The second year retention rate at WSU is increasing, from 64.5% to 66.1%, but still needs improvement.

Deployment of a Noel Levitz Retention Management System Plus (RMS Plus) will enable the university to retain more students by using sophisticated assessment and analytics to identify students who may be at risk and intervene to improve academic performance.

The PIF grant announcement was part of the 150th Anniversary celebration of UMass and a major $607 million bond funding announcement from the Patrick/Murray Administration.

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