Honors Senior Theses/Projects

Date of Award

6-2022

Exit Requirement

Undergraduate Honors Thesis/Project

Department

Honors Program

Faculty Advisor

Megan Habermann-Guthrie, M.S.

Honors Program Director

Dr. Gavin Keulks

Abstract

A common goal amongst many different universities is to attain a higher retention rate from their students. This project will particularly focus on trying to achieve this goal at Western Oregon University, making it so more students will continue pursuing their degree at WOU. As a Western Oregon University alum, I have first-hand experience with recognizing the need for a program that Western can offer to students. Due to the common retention goal amongst the collegiate world, there is a plethora of information that discusses the psychology surrounding why students are hard to retain - this dissertation will only cover the information that directly relates to the community, geography, and population that is most similar to Monmouth, Oregon. We will start by discussing current and recent past practices that WOU has proposed to retain students, we will also examine what another university, Eastern Washington University, which is a peer institution to WOU and what their current methods/data on retention techniques are, then we will discuss the data dilemma that may cause lack of true information that could impact how well techniques are doing. At the end of this discussion, you will be able to view a PowerPoint that goes over the details of a newly developed pilot program named, “Wolfie Round-up''. I have composed this pilot program to have a sole focus on achieving a higher retention rate for Western Oregon University in conjunction with other methods that WOU is current by providing Western students with more accessible resources, informational sessions that allow new and current students to have a personal relationship with different members of the WOU community, and 4 specifically identify most aspects that the university has to offer that their students can take advantage of during their time.

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