Office of Public Affairs
CONTACT: Susan Chilcott, AASCU, 202-478-4661
Dr. Rhonda Mandel, SUNY Oswego, 312-2232
May 9, 2003
SUNY OSWEGO JOINS PROJECT TO SET HALLMARKS FOR IMPROVING FIRST-YEAR COLLEGE EXPERIENCE
OSWEGO -- Striving to enhance learning and retention of first-year college students, SUNY Oswego has joined 122 other state colleges in partnering with John Gardner's First Year Policy Center to establish the Hallmarks of Excellence in the First Year of College.
All 123 institutions are members of the American Association of State Colleges and Universities.
The Hallmarks of Excellence project's goal is to create a model for how to design and execute an effective set of programs for the first year of college. The standards developed will emerge from AASCU campus experience and will be appropriate for the unique circumstances of AASCU institutions.
SUNY Oswego's first-year initiatives are becoming a defining element of the Oswego college experience. Among them are the first-year advisement program, First Choice comprehensive freshman experience, Oswego Reading Initiative and first-year residential experience.
These programs and key staff responsible for creating them have received commendations and awards from the Commission on Higher Education of the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools, the National Center for the First-Year Experience and Students in Transition, Houghton Mifflin Co., the State University of New York, USA Group Noel-Levitz and the National Academic Advising Association.
Other New York colleges participating in the Hallmarks of Excellence in the First Year of College project include SUNY Plattsburgh, Brockport, Cortland and Fredonia; and Brooklyn, Medgar Evers and Queens colleges of the City University of New York.
"This project will develop and validate a model of excellence for the first year specifically for AASCU institutions and develop a process to help campuses measure the attainment of excellence as embodied in these 'hallmarks,'" said John Gardner, executive director of the Policy Center on the First Year of College.
"By the project's end, a research- and AASCU-based model will be available to enhance student learning and retention."
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