Many switch college students cite affordability as a driving concern. Given a number of the unknowns for switch college students—corresponding to which establishment they may transfer to and what number of of their credit will apply to program completion—it’s generally troublesome to estimate what a bachelor’s diploma will value. The College of Arkansas’ new switch scholarship program seeks to deal with these challenges.
The Arkansas Switch Achievement Scholarship (ATAS), rolled out in fall 2019, has proven unimaginable development, notably amongst college students from low-income and underrepresented backgrounds, together with first-generation college students. The scholarship pays the distinction between the U of A’s base tuition hourly charge and the present base hourly charge on the two-year establishment. So the coed pays the identical tuition on the U of A that they did on the two-year school. Within the 2021–22 educational 12 months, the award ranged between $121.51 and $186.51 per credit score hour.
What Does ATAS Look Like?
To be eligible, college students should be Arkansas residents who’ve accomplished an affiliate of arts, affiliate of science or affiliate of arts in educating at one of many seven collaborating schools and enroll on the U of A in an on-campus, undergraduate diploma program the semester instantly following diploma conferment. The award could be renewed for as many as 10 semesters, so long as college students are repeatedly enrolled (full- or part-time) and keep in good educational standing.
- College of Arkansas Group Faculty at Batesville
- College of Arkansas—Cossatot Group Faculty
- College of Arkansas at Morrilton
- College of Arkansas Wealthy Mountain Group Faculty
- College of Arkansas—Pulaski Tech
- College of Arkansas at Hope-Texarkana
- Phillips County Group Faculty of the College of Arkansas
An Emphasis on Outreach and Recruitment
To announce this system, we partnered with registrars at collaborating system faculties to share listing data for college kids with 45 hours or extra or who had utilized for commencement. Many colleges have created data sheets for his or her college students, and that contact data comes straight to the U of A’s Switch Central workplace in admissions for follow-up. In 2020–21, an admission’s graduate assistant was on-site at one location to debate this system with potential college students, and we’re scheduled for extra such visits sooner or later.
Different promotion channels embrace particular webinars, attending orientation/welcome occasions for brand new college students at two-year system faculties and fliers custom-made for every faculty, along with common recruitment efforts like visits and school festivals.
We’ve additionally introduced to representatives from group school companions, corresponding to school and advisers, to additional promote transfers within the state. As we had carried out earlier than the pandemic, we’re once more visiting their campuses and internet hosting switch connections occasions on our sister campuses. Moreover, we’ve shared details about this revolutionary program on the Arkansas Group Faculties annual convention, the Nationwide Institute for the Research of Switch College students annual convention and the Southern Affiliation of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers.
Influence on Fairness and Outcomes
These outreach efforts have been profitable. Following ATAS’s launch in Could 2019, the variety of functions, admissions and enrollments from the seven collaborating faculties within the U of A system has grown considerably. By spring 2022, extra college students from these faculties enrolled than had utilized previous to the announcement.
Although we solely have a small pattern dimension thus far—3,617 whole switch enrollments, with 101 being ATAS recipients (fall 2019–spring 2021)—we will see some basic takeaways:
- This system is rising quickly: in fall 2019, 11 % of switch college students from Arkansas with an affiliate diploma had been ATAS college students. In fall 2020, that quantity was 40 %.
- This system is broadly adopted by first-generation college students: 61 % of ATAS college students are first era in comparison with 44.8 % of all new transfers.
- College students of colour are properly represented: 33.6 % of ATAS recipients are college students of colour, in comparison with 30.9 % of all new transfers.
- This system is being adopted amongst low-income college students: 36.6 % of ATAS college students are Pell eligible in comparison with 17.1 % of all new transfers.
- First-year retention charges are barely greater amongst ATAS college students—a two- to four-point improve
In 12 months to 12 months, from fall 2019 to fall 2020:
- Retention improved amongst ATAS college students (and people with an affiliate diploma), even whereas it fell for all new transfers.
- The proportion of ATAS college students who belong to an underrepresented group in comparison with these in-state college students with an affiliate diploma grew sooner than the underrepresented charge amongst all new transfers.
- The identical development was seen for Pell-eligible and first-generation college students.
- Getting into GPA decreased amongst ATAS college students and all new transfers, but it surely rose amongst these from Arkansas and people with an affiliate diploma.
Past numbers, the ATAS has impressed six new educational agreements with system faculties with extra on the way in which.
This switch scholarship program has proven unimaginable development, offered distinctive alternatives for a wider pool of scholars, and elevated pupil success among the many switch inhabitants. By addressing affordability and making a bridge between two-year packages in our system to the College of Arkansas system’s flagship establishment, ATAS is shifting the state towards its aim of accelerating school diploma attainment amongst Arkansans.