Grant Award Will Support Adult Student Boot Camp

Submitted on May 22, 2013 at 12:42 PM

A boot camp sounds like a tough thing to go through, but a pilot program at Volunteer State Community College will use the approach to help new adult students realize their strengths in order to be successful in college. The program was recently awarded a $26,860 grant from the Tennessee College Access and Success Network (TCASN). Vol State faculty and staff will hand select certain adult students for the week-long program. The criteria will be "students of potential" who could do well in college with some additional preparation. The pilot will be part of the successful Supplemental Instruction program at Vol State

"The boot camp will be led by Vol State student leaders who have been in that same position. They were adult students who needed to build new skills to get ready for college," said Supplemental Instruction director, Toni Murad. "They will be mentors for the new students throughout the year. We will also work to develop the students into a team. That way they'll already know people when they start classes."

Non-traditional students often begin their college careers under-prepared, unsure of themselves, and unable to master the routine of college life. Based on the Gallup Organization's Student Development Program, the selected students will identify their unique strengths and how to use them to overcome those barriers. The boot camp will be a drastic departure from the traditional seminars that focus on academic remedial work and will, instead, guide students to maximize their strengths and abilities. The non-traditional student boot camp will also be part of an overall plan to establish career pathways for non-traditional adult students at Vol State. Adult Education program participants, whose goal is to pursue a college certificate or degree will, during their course study to complete their GED, receive college and career guidance services.

The pilot program will serve 150 students when it is implemented this coming August. The TCASN grant competition brought in 79 applications from across the state, of which 12 were funded.


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