Higher Education Innovation: SUU’s Assistant Coaches for Excellence and Success (ACES) ProgramNovember 17, 20201 min read
On Episode 98 of Solutions for Higher Education, Southern Utah University's President Scott L Wyatt and Steve Meredith sit down with SUU’s Dr. Eric Kirby, assistant vice president for student affairs and Ryan Bailey, coordinator of completion and student success. They discuss SUU’s main retention strategy, the Assistant Coaches for Excellence and Success (ACES), a peer mentoring program for first year students.
"The ACES are basically the 'one stop shop' for all incoming students, no ifs, ands, or buts about it," said Dr. Kirby. "The ACE contacts their incoming student within 24 hours of that student ’depositing’ at SUU and basically says that much. 'I am your one stop shop; I am your end all and be all of anything you need. I may not know the answers, but I’m going to get you where you need to go.'"
"It’s not personalized meaning we just know their name. The ACES are ready and willing to truly offer a unique, personalized experience for every single student who is in their cohort. It’s something that is really cool to see in action and it changes lives. These students feel it from the very first outreach and they know they’ve got someone on campus that cares about them."
Dr. Eric Kirby serves as assistant vice president for student affairs and leads campus retention, completion, and student success initiatives, as well as directly overseeing various student success programs.
Eric Kirby Assistant Professor of Management, Leadership and Business Law
Specializing in student success strategies, civil litigation, and student retention and first year experience in higher education