During the month of February, the Alexandria Campus provided two Graduation Preparation Workshops for students who are applying for graduation in the spring or summer 2016 semesters. The workshops started in 2013 as a collaborative initiative between the Alexandria and Annandale Counseling Departments for continuing students. Other participating departments in the initiative included Admissions and Records, Barnes and Noble Campus Bookstore and Financial Aid.
One goal of the program is to provide intentional retention services for students. Another goal is to give guidance to students on how to complete their academic programs successfully and transition into life after NOVA.
Understanding that the last year of college for many students can be challenging, encouraging students to plan and utilize time management skills is an important part of the program. Students have to meet various deadlines (especially for university transfer) in their last semester. Thus, a panel of staff addressed topics including verifying academic requirements, applying for graduation, commencement information, transfer planning, financial aid and preparation for employment. Students were also given an opportunity to ask questions of the panelists.
The Alexandria Campus held two programs on February 5 with 25 students and an evening program on February 17 with 64 students in attendance. Students attending the first session were able to have their academic advisement reports reviewed by a member of the Counseling Department upon departure. For the first time, the evening program was provided as a live stream using Google Hangout On Air through the coordination of the Technology Innovation Learning and Teaching (TILT) Department. There were 34 viewers during the session which provided students the ability to watch live online if they could not come to campus. The link is also available for continued viewing and to date has been viewed over 300 times on YouTube.
Students who attended the program were able to provide their information and be assigned to an Academic Success Counselor. Students will receive reminders about graduation deadlines and be connected to a resource for additional support. The Counseling Departments will also gather information regarding the transfer (acceptances, selections, etc.) and/or career decisions of the participants. Various NOVA campuses will have Graduation Preparation programs each semester with slight differences in format.
Please consult your campus calendars for future events and recommend students to attend who are close to graduation or want to prepare early for their last semesters at NOVA.
The Extended Learning Institute now has a virtual graduation preparation video. It is a permanent link that can be shared year around.