It’s a pleasure to offer some information for your consideration in this issue of the newsletter. I recently reviewed the 2012 results of The National Survey of Student Engagement, an instrument that surveys college students to assess the extent to which they engage in educational practices associated with high levels of learning and achievement. We at Nazareth endeavor to provide these educational practices both inside and outside the classroom to help our students thrive and succeed. What are these especially effective educational practices? I’ll write about a few.
Data from this survey and other research tells us that the more contact students have with their instructors the greater the chance that meaningful, positive relationships will develop. Advise your sons and daughters to look for opportunities to seek faculty out during office hours to ask questions or discuss insights regarding coursework, to serve on college committees with instructors, or even to collaborate on research. These activities provide a window into the day-to-day lives of faculty members and help students see them as role models and mentors.
Enriching Educational Experiences
Learning happens in many places and spaces on our campus. Have your students ever attended an event sponsored by international students, enjoyed an African drumming performance in the Arts Center, or participated in an alternative spring break service trip to the Kanatsiohareke Mohawk Community? These are all ways to develop an awareness of and appreciation for other cultures and perspectives. Employers are looking for graduates who can communicate with and relate to persons inside and outside the organization and who can work in a team structure. What a wonderful way for our students to deepen their learning, enhance their personal growth and prepare for their lives after Nazareth, all at the same time!
Supportive campus environment
We know that students learn more, perform better and are more satisfied at colleges that are committed to their success. You have read elsewhere in this newsletter about the Center for Student Success and other departments focused on providing an engaging and supportive experience for our students. Though we try mightily to ensure that students know about the myriad ways we offer academic and social support, we can still do more – this is where you come in. We hope that our students feel a sense of belonging and accomplishment at Nazareth, but if you hear from them that something is missing, let us know, and encourage them to approach any of the staff in Career Services, Center for Civic Engagement, Counseling Services, Residential Life, Student Activities, just to name a few.
I invite you to familiarize yourself with the many opportunities within Student Development by checking our website.
I look forward to working with you to provide an environment that fosters extraordinary learning, growth and development in our students.
Vice President for Student Development