For Immediate Release
Date: April 6, 2021
Contact: Tom McGuire, Director of Communications/Media Relations
Retention Numbers Climb for Bloomsburg University Act 101 Students
BLOOMSBURG—Students in Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania’s Act 101 program have seen increasingly strong retention numbers over the last several years. Since 2017, Act 101 students have increased their first to second year retention rates by nearly 20 percent (45 to 63.7 percent).
The Act 101 Program is a comprehensive academic support program targeting first-generation, low-income Bloomsburg University students. Act 101 students are provided intensive, engaging, and enriching opportunities to develop the skills to help them achieve academic excellence. Students in the program come from households with incomes of double the federal poverty level or lower.
Ralph Godbolt, director of the Office of Access and Success and interim dean of students, has put a lot of hard work into helping the students.
“Our team here works hard to give these students a chance to be successful,” Godbolt said. “We provide to them the academic, cultural, and social interaction they need.”
Participants of the Act 101 program are strongly encouraged to participate in the Emerging Scholars program, a program developed and implemented by Godbolt. “The Emerging Scholars Program is a comprehensive academic support program targeting first-generation BU students who are demonstrating risk factors that will increase the likelihood of not completing a four-year college degree,” said Godbolt. “Through the Emerging Scholars Program, we provide opportunities for students to develop the skills that will assist them in achieving academic success. The success of the Emerging Scholars program directly impacted the strong first to second year retention rates of Act 101 students.”
As part of the Emerging Scholars Program, Godbolt and his small team provide eight hours a week of study hall time, compassion-centered academic advising, and community engagement opportunities. They also provide opportunities to engage in yoga and mindfulness activities and weekly ‘rap sessions,’ where students engage in intense conversations about ongoing matters in their lives.
“The rap sessions help in building a close relationship between the student and counselor,” Godbolt said.
The Office of Access and Success oversees the Act 101 program. The office develops and implements academic, social, and cultural programming designed to assist students develop the skills necessary for college persistence and graduation.
Programs of the Office of Access and Success include Act 101, Emerging Scholars, the Office of Diversity and Retention, Board of Governors, SEE Yourself Healthier and Happier, and the Out of the Classroom: Into the Community initiative.
Bloomsburg University is one of 14 universities in Pennsylvania's State System of Higher Education. We believe opportunity belongs to those who are ready to work for it and unafraid to do something great with it. But it's not just for us. As a Husky, every step you take pulls the whole pack forward. Serving approximately 8,200 students, BU offers comprehensive programs of study in five distinct colleges: College of Education, Zeigler College of Business, College of Liberal Arts, College of Science and Technology, and Honors College.