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Board approves comprehensive Pathways to Student Success Plan

Posted on 9/26/2012

For More Information Contact:
Linda Donlin, Director of Communications and Media Relations
North Dakota University System
Phone: 701.328.2962

Board approves comprehensive Pathways to Student Success Plan

BISMARCK - At its regular meeting today, the State Board of Higher Education approved a comprehensive plan that is designed to build a strong foundation for high-quality education for North Dakota students for the future. In a unanimous vote, the Board approved the North Dakota University System "Pathways to Student Success Plan," which will be implemented in a graduated process during the next few years.

"We are extremely pleased with the plan the Chancellor developed and with the rigorous and inclusive vetting process that he and his staff are accomplishing across our campuses and constituencies," said Duaine Espegard, president of SBHE. "They have created a plan that we believe will raise our university system to the level of distinction our great state deserves."

Originally introduced under the working title of the "Three-Tier System Access Plan," the plan is grounded in a mission-driven university system whose 11 institutions work efficiently and transparently to make students' educational goals their highest priority. The final name "Pathways to Student Success Plan" more accurately reflects the focus of the plan, which is to ensure that North Dakota students are effectively prepared to be successful during their academic preparation and in their chosen careers.

"A long-term goal of this Board has been to elevate the academic standing of our 11 institutions," said Grant Shaft, past president of SBHE and current board member. "Today's Board action is the first giant step in a process that will dramatically improve our institutions and the quality of the education we provide to our students."

The plan contains the following components:

Access. Establish a set of admission standards that links student readiness with the appropriate institution's mission and resources.

  • Admissions index components will include ACT composite, GPA, class rank where suitable, core courses completed and ND residency.

Quality. Create a High School to College Success Report to provide feedback on how students perform at the postsecondary level.

Affordability. Expand the present financial aid program to include more need-based aid as well as support for the adult learner population.

Learning. Deliver remedial and developmental courses through the community colleges, partnering with the regional and research universities when most appropriate for student success.

  • Establish a uniform set of criteria and tuition for dual-credit courses.
  • Increase effectiveness of student academic support.

Accountability. Establish a uniform, transparent tuition model across institutions and delivery types and standardize undergraduate tuition waiver practices.
  • Move to a per-credit hour tuition model, differentiated by program where applicable.

"My hope is that the citizens of North Dakota will support the NDUS Pathways to Student Success Plan and make our university system one of the truly great educational systems in the nation," said Ham Shirvani, Chancellor of NDUS. "We are poised to be not just a good university system, but a truly great university system. It is ours to build. I believe in that goal and, working together, we can accomplish it."

Bismarck State CollegeDakota College at BottineauDickinson State UniversityLake Region State CollegeMayville State UniversityMinot State UniversityNorth Dakota State College of ScienceNorth Dakota State UniversityUniversity of North DakotaValley City State UniversityWilliston State College
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