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University Collaboration Highlighted at White House Summit


United States Secretary of Education Arne Duncan welcomes participants to the second College Opportunity Day of Action hosted by the White House.


College Opportunity Day of Action – Morning Session

College Opportunity Day of Action – Afternoon Session

A recent collaborative project by the four campuses of the University of Missouri System was recognized at the White House College Opportunity Day of Action, held December 4.

The campuses have been working jointly to provide enhanced academic advising and support with a goal of improving student retention and success.  As a part of that joint initiative, campus leaders collaborated to select and begin implementing a technology tool called Starfish.

“This tool provides faculty and staff the ability to evaluate where advising and interventions are working well and where they need strengthening.  Stronger advising helps students be more successful and select paths of study that match their personal strengths,” said Kim McNeley, chair of the systemwide Comprehensive Retention Initiative committee and associate vice provost for the University College at the University of Missouri-Kansas City.

President Obama, the First Lady, Vice President Biden and hundreds of higher education leaders spent a day seeking new avenues to help more students prepare for and graduate from college. The Starfish vendor was one of the higher education partners asked to provide input to the summit and it selected the collaborative efforts of the University of Missouri to highlight what can be accomplished when multiple campuses work together on behalf of their student populations.

“We are thrilled that our work in Missouri was highlighted at the White House,” said Steve Graham, senior associate vice president for Academic Affairs at the UM System.  “The Starfish tool has been a great impetus for our four campuses to collaborate in ways that we are similar and yet capitalize on our unique campus strengths.  We believe that together, we can impact not just the White House initiatives, but meet President Wolfe’s strategic goal of developing and promoting best practices in student advising and retention.”

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Campus: System
Key words: Competitiveness, Innovation, President, UM System,
County: Boone