Eliminating Learning Barriers

NSU is committed to eliminating barriers to learning. Our holistic approach will focus on academic preparation, achievement, financial assistance, cultural inclusion, engagement, and leadership development.

Academic Preparation

NSU will focus on college readiness and remediation. We will foster new partnerships with high schools, community colleges, and other agencies to help ensure the admission of academically prepared, capable, and motivated students. Our developmental education curriculum will give our students the foundation they need to succeed in college course work. As such, we aspire for our students to be:

  • Participating in available bridge programs designed to ensure college readiness.
  • Exceeding the admission standards established by the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education.
  • Utilizing appropriate academic support services to achieve academic goals.
  • Performing at a high level in all general education and lower-division coursework in preparation for their major field of study.

Target Initiatives:

  • Partnering with community K-12 schools to bridge academic preparation gaps.
  • Establishing and implementing best practices to increase retention of academically “at risk” students.
  • Revising curricular expectations and student learning outcomes for developmental classes to increase students’ future academic success as measured by matriculation to general education courses and grades in key college-level courses.
  • Refining academic tutoring and mentoring resources for students.

Academic Achievement

NSU will prepare students to matriculate through nationally relevant curriculum. As such, we aspire for our students to be:

  • Demonstrating intellectual skills such as critical and reflective thinking, knowledge acquisition, integration, and application.
  • Developing an appreciation for life-long learning and collaboration.
  • Establishing a career path that will guide academic matriculation in major-related fields to post-graduation.
  • Graduating with a bachelor’s degree within four years, or in a timeline that meets their individual educational goals.
  • Matriculating to respected graduate and professional programs or finding employment in their field of preparation.

Target Initiatives:

  • Collecting, analyzing, and utilizing student learning assessment data to evaluate program offerings and student achievement.
  • Establishing institutionally-recognized learning communities that target student academic interests.
  • Building bridges to certificates and degrees.
  • Expanding the “Reach Higher for Adult Completion” program.
  • Implementing and evaluating the university academic advising model, Dual-Shared Advising.
  • Identifying, adding, and revising academic programs in response to degree market demands.

Financial Assistance

NSU will provide every possible opportunity for students to overcome financial barriers that limit access to their educational pursuits. The Admissions and Recruitment Office, Student Financial Services Office and the NSU Foundation and Scholarship Office will work collaboratively to reatively leverage all financial resources available to ensure the most efficient and effective distribution of funds to our students. As such, we aspire for our students to be:

  • Meeting priority deadlines for state and federal financial assistance through FAFSA.
  • Applying and competing for private, tribal, and institutional scholarship opportunities.
  • Maintaining scholarship and federal aid eligibility requirements for continued funding.
  • Maintaining fiscal responsibility for their education.
  • Managing the use of financial aid to meet the actual costs of degree completion and avoiding unnecessary debt.

Target Initiatives:

  • Developing and implementing a plan to leverage financial aid and scholarships to support student recruitment and increase retention.
  • Increasing student financial literacy.
  • Implementing a fundraising campaign to increase private dollars to fund scholarship opportunities for students.
  • Maximizing cost containment and cost avoidance in order to keep tuition and fees reasonable for students.
  • Implementing an early intervention team to assist students who may be experiencing a personal financial crisis.

Cultural Inclusion

NSU will promote a culturally inclusive campus community that supports the appreciation and exploration of diversity. We will recruit a diverse student population that is representative of our region. Our faculty and staff will support educational programming that provides unique cultural opportunities. As such, we aspire for our students to be:

  • Exploring and defining their identity.
  • Respecting their similarities and differences in relation to others.
  • Attending local or regional diversity events and programming.
  • Participating in regional and national conferences that celebrate cultural inclusion.
  • Seeking international learning exchanges through study abroad programs.
  • Demonstrating knowledge of NSU’s heritage of serving indigenous people.

Target Initiatives:

  • Fostering an NSU culture of, “I care, therefore I will…”
  • Committing to solution–based service focused on assisting students with overcoming barriers to academic progression.
  • Creating intentional exchange and integration between/among underrepresented student populations, international student populations, and mainstream student populations.
  • Becoming the leading institution in indigenous student recruitment and retention programs.

Engagement

NSU will continue to offer a myriad of social, civic, and co-curricular engagement opportunities for our students and our community. We will demonstrate the value of these experiential and service learning opportunities and encourage participation by all NSU students. As such, we aspire for our
students to be:

  • Seeking opportunities to connect with the community through organized service learning projects.
  • Exploring a living/learning community.
  • Joining a social or civic organization.
  • Participating in an organization or field experience related to their major.

Target Initiatives:

  • Engaging students in civic, multicultural and global learning through academic programs and co-curricular activities.
  • Establishing a minimum service hour requirement for all undergraduates.
  • Building services learning programs for students.
  • Providing opportunities for students to gain global knowledge through co-curricular experiences and international opportunities.

Leadership

NSU will recruit and develop student leaders. We will provide leadership training and development for all students through intentional curricular and cocurricular activities and programming. As such, we aspire for our students to be:

  • Competing for Honors, President’s Leadership Class (PLC), RiverHawks Impacting Student Enrollment (RISE), and other sponsored leadership scholarships.
  • Developing their personal leadership skills through engagement in scholarly and co-curricular activities.
  • Seeking and exploring leadership opportunities.

Target Initiatives:

  • Providing opportunities for students to build leadership knowledge and skills through nationally recognized leadership development programs.
  • Adding university sponsored leadership scholarship programs for branch campuses.
  • Enhancing and maximizing leadership development experiences within academic programs.
  • Connecting students to NSU alumni mentors.