Early Intervention Strategy provides extra support during remote instruction

By Amanda Coscarelli, Feb. 23, 2021

The Office of Student Success is working to improve the Early Intervention Strategy that aims to provide students with extra assistance they may need during online learning. The Early Intervention Strategy, with the help of Cal Poly Pomona faculty, connects students with resources that can provide academic, mental health and career related support.

While other California State University campuses have implemented the program, CPP is the first to use it across all colleges and departments.

Associate Provost Terri Gomez hopes to improve the program to help students’ more specific needs in areas such as tutoring, well-being and attendance.

“Absentees were a big one (in 2020),” said Gomez. “A lot of students had difficulty engaging in a virtual classroom the way they did in person.”

For many CPP students, the change in mode of instruction is especially difficult.

Benjamin Shields, a second-year electronic systems engineering technology student, said, “The mantra of the school is learn by doing right? But most people aren’t doing much at home.”

This semester, the Office of Student Success hopes to partner with the financial aid office and the Career Center to further expand their services and provide outreach to students who are experiencing financial hardship as well as those struggling to start a career under current circumstances.

“Students are in financial crises,” said Gomez. “Some students who were not receiving financial aid previously are now having to apply because their income has been affected.”

Marivel Soria started working with the early intervention team in early 2020 as the early alerts intervention specialist.

“Things come up in our lives. People might lose family members. Maybe everything was fine for the first few weeks and then things start to snowball, and students stop showing up to class and then they start to need help,” Soria said.

The STEM Success Initiative links students with resources across campus such as the Career Center and the Bronco Wellness Center.

For students who are struggling to keep up in class, professors can send a response notifying the Office of Student Success. This strategy was popular among professors, according to Gomez, who said that with over 31% of faculty responding to 7,597 progress reports.

This semester, the team has seen an increase in student outreach and participation in the program.

Sheilds believes that the Early Intervention Strategy is helpful for struggling students.

“Honestly I think that would help a lot,” he said. “The teachers and professors that I felt best with online are the ones who I felt comfortable reaching out to. It helps just knowing that there is someone who’s paying attention to you.”

Erin DeRosa, interim director of University Advising, stressed that the team wants to be as approachable as possible.

She said, “It’s not meant to be punitive. We just want to provide support.”

For students who lack sufficient technology to engage in online classes, a form is located at the Student Success website to apply for laptops.

To find more information on the Early Intervention Strategy, or to connect with student resources, visit the Office of Student Success at https://www.cpp.edu/studentsuccess/progress-reports.shtml

Feature image courtesy of Pexels Vlada. 

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