How does the STAR Initiative work?
The STAR Initiative is coordinated by the Office of Student Support. The Director of Student Support monitors the progress of all students and works directly with faculty and staff to identify students who are experiencing academic difficulties or other hardships. If a faculty or staff member is concerned about a student, he or she is encouraged to file a STAR report – see below.
When should I file a report?
The STAR Initiative aims to enhance student success and increase retention. Thus, STAR should be contacted if you are generally concerned about a student’s academic progress, pastoral need and/or overall well-being. The STAR program collaborates directly with the appropriate offices on campus to reduce the likelihood of academic failure and help the student access the resources they need to prosper as a member of the Maria College community.
Example of issues to report:
- Student is performing unsatisfactory in the course and is unresponsive to your individual assistance.
- Student has multiple unexplained absences and/or consistent lateness.
- Student expresses great difficulty in adapting to college life and/or meeting academic expectations in one or more courses.
- Student indicates they are experiencing financial hardship.
- Sudden drops in academic performance or changes in behavior.
What if I file a STAR report on a student? Will they know?
If a faculty or staff member files a STAR report, the Director of Student Support will carefully review the provided information to determine if any action is necessary. This usually involves gathering more information from other faculty and staff who are familiar with the student. If action is deemed necessary, the student will be contacted by the Director of Student Support to schedule an Academic Resource Review Session.
What happens to the information gathered?
All information reported to and gathered by the Director of Student Support will be kept on record in an individual STAR case file. These files are kept completely confidential and reviewed only with select members of the STAR Case Management Team – Drew Ledoux, Associate Vice President of Student Affairs; Sr. Chris Connolly, Minister of Pastoral Care; Kim Noakes, Director of Counseling and Accessibility Services – on a bi-weekly basis.
What is an Academic Resource Review Session?
This is a face-to-face meeting with the singular purpose of ascertaining what challenges are impeding the student’s academic success and developing a practical strategy to overcome them. A typical meeting will involve:
- Provides an overview of the STAR Initiative
- Outlines all potential local campus resources, which would be of benefit to the student (support services, study spaces, potential financial aid, etc.)
- Reviews potential external resources in the local community (childcare services, food pantries, legal advocacy, language services, etc.)
- Assists the student in developing a plan of action to overcome his or her current challenges.
What happens after the Academic Resource Review Session?
The Director of Student Support will monitor the student’s progress and make contact with him or her for a brief update on a bi-weekly basis. Once the student has demonstrated significant academic progress, his or her case will be closed.
Do students have to attend the Academic Resource Review Session?
No, the session is completely voluntary. However, it is strongly recommended that students attend as it is in their best interest. Review Sessions provide students with a unique opportunity to express their individual challenges and receive one-on-one assistance.
Maria College offers a wide variety of resources on campus to assist students in a variety of ways. If the resource is not available on campus, the Office of Student Support will work with students to find an external agency or organization that directly addresses their needs.
Can I request an update on a student after filing a STAR report?
Absolutely! Simply contact the Director of Student Support by phone (518-861-2502) or email: firstname.lastname@example.org