ASI to consider retention resolution

Greg Kane

A resolution supporting a series of recommendations for solving Sacramento State’s student retention problems will be voted on at the Associated Students, Inc. Board of Directors meeting Wednesday.

The suggestions include expanded orientation and advising for at-risk students, establishing a centralized location on campus for student services, and making seminars mandatory for incoming freshmen.

ASI President Artemio Pimentel, who wrote the resolution, said at the board’s Sept. 26 meeting that measures need to be taken to improve the University?s graduation numbers.

“I would like to see us get a task force together to deal with this retention issue,” Pimentel said.

Many Sac State officials, including President Donald Gerth, have pointed to retention as a high priority for the University. Currently, less than 50 percent of students graduate within six years of enrollment, according to recent University statistics.

ASI?s resolution is aimed at fixing those numbers. Pimentel said one important step for improving retention on campus is to increase visibility for existing programs that address the issue, such as the Educational Opportunity Program and the Cooper-Woodson College Enhancement Program.

One way to do that, Pimentel said, is to institutionalize the programs, which would increase funding by bringing them under the University umbrella.

“I?m simply asking that we look at the possibility of (whether) these programs want to be institutionalized as part of the University ? so they can get funding and help from the University,” Pimentel said.

The resolution also suggests that a centralized location for services be established. Currently, student services are “scattered all over the University,” according to the resolution, and a familiar location would make it easier for students to seek help.

Improved strategies for advising at-risk students is another need identified in the resolution, which suggests that an “early warning system” be set up so potential difficulties can be alleviated before they happen.

ASI board members responded positively to the resolution when Pimentel introduced it Sept. 26.

“I think it?s a proactive approach to an important issue on campus,” said California State Student Association representative Brandon Kline.

The ASI board meeting will be held at 1 p.m. at Foothill Suite in the University Union.