Staff in SGSC’s Student Success unit contacted such students to schedule an appointment to determine what it will take for them to complete their degree, not simply in terms of courses needed, but also in terms of options to facilitate completion—such as online and independent study courses, legitimate course substitutions, change of program of study, and the like. The goal of the pilot was that at least 30% of those re-enrolled would complete their associate’s degree within one calendar year.
The “Near Completers” strategy (strategy #3) is terminated as a college completion strategy as of the conclusion of academic year 2014-2015 for two chief reasons. It has become evident that this strategy is a one-time effort which achieved success in academic year 2014-2015 with a cohort of near completers of 22 students, approximately half of whom re-enrolled and graduated. Subsequent attempts at establishing a second cohort have revealed that any future cohort would consist of so few students that campus resources devoted to the strategy are more effectively tasked with other aspects of recruiting and advising. Also, the creation of the USG’s “Go Back. Move Ahead” initiative is a significant umbrella under which to cover the same kind of effort. SGSC is developing a flagging process in the Office of Admissions to identify students who reapply after two years since last attendance and who are within 15 hours of completion of an associate’s degree. The institution’s goal is to shepherd those students to graduation within one calendar year.