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BSC Receives Grant to Establish Transitional Studies Emporium

  • Created
    Tuesday, March 12 2013
  • Created by
    Jim Nelson/Media Relations - (304) 327-4103 jnelson@bluefieldstate.edu

Initiative Will Provide Essential Help During Students' Freshman Year

(Bluefield)—The West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission has funded a Bluefield State College faculty member's grant proposal to defray costs associated with the creation of a Transitional Studies Emporium at BSC. Dr. Sean Connolly, Chair of the new Department of Basic Studies and Strategic Programs at BSC, wrote the grant, which will address two key HEPC requirements to meet students' developmental education needs.

"A top priority for state institutions of higher education in West Virginia is developmental education," Dr. Connolly explained. Our proposal is consistent with HEPC requirements that outline skills requirements for students and also establish freshman assessment and placement standards." The $9,000 HEPC grant will underwrite the purchase of a Smart Board (an interactive computer screen), train staff, and cover costs associated with attendance at an accelerated learning placement conference in June, 2013.

BSC's Developmental Education Renovation Plan, which will be launched at the start of the Fall 2013 Semester, implements new and emerging techniques in developmental education. "Our plan is consistent with HEPC requirements that outline skills requirements for students and also establish freshman assessment and placement standards," he added. Through accelerated learning placement, students are concurrently co-enrolled in developmental education courses and college credit (100-level) courses. BSC's new Transitional Studies Emporium includes a computer laboratory with dedicated tutors to assist students with homework.

"The Emporium will also nurture a feeling of community among students, which should in turn help with retaining students during the vitally important period from freshman to sophomore year," Dr. Connolly continued.

The Transitional Studies Emporium is Bluefield State College's focused, coordinated plan to meet students at their point of need and support their academic success, Dr. Connolly explained. "The 21st Century economy is technology-driven and requires a skilled workforce," he stated. "The Emporium will play a very important role in helping our students strengthen their reading, math, and writing abilities so that they are equipped to graduate and embark on fulfilling and productive careers."