Tarleton Prepares to Launch Fall Student Success Initiative


Wednesday, June 30, 2021

STEPHENVILLE, Texas — Tarleton State University has received a $691,158 multi-year grant from the Greater Texas Foundation to launch a new student success initiative this fall.

The Divisions of Academic Affairs and Student Affairs have partnered together to launch Academic and Career Engagement (ACE) Communities, which will provide all first-time-in-college students access to and engagement with multiple evidence-based, high-impact practices.

“We are extremely grateful to the Greater Texas Foundation,” said Tarleton President James Hurley. “This multi-year grant will enable us to remove some of the barriers that prohibit students from persisting and achieving optimal academic success. In particular, this grant is a real game changer for first-generation students.”

Through ACE Communities, students are empowered to navigate academic, logistical, and social demands of their first-year at Tarleton successfully.

“One of the greatest roadblocks to college success is lack of student support,” said Dr. Laurie Sharp, Executive Director of Strategic Academic Initiatives. “We are so grateful for the generosity of Greater Texas Foundation, as their commitment to strengthening student supports will help Tarleton Texans begin a successful journey in higher education.”

The Executive Vice President of Academic Affairs and Provost, Dr. Karen Murray, acknowledged benefits associated with the meta-major first-year seminar courses at Tarleton.

“These courses help first-time-in-college students become informed and make connections between their abilities, interests, and career options,” she said. “Thus, students have a way to find and pursue a clear and timely path to degree completion at Tarleton State University.”

Dr. Kelli C. Styron, the Vice President for Student Affairs, expressed enthusiasm for Tarleton scaling up living learning communities among first-time-in-college students who live in housing on campus

“Residence Life is working diligently to assign students to residence halls based upon their meta-major,” she said. “Each of these living learning communities will have a residential leader who provides support to their peers and reinforces the curricular components addressed in the first-year seminar course.

“Key collaborations like this one on our campus allow Student Affairs and Academic Affairs to partner in order to give our students the best educational environment they deserve.”

For more information about ACE Communities, contact Dr. Laurie Sharp at 254-968-9573, [email protected].

A founding member of The Texas A&M System, Tarleton State is breaking records — in enrollment, research, scholarship, athletics, philanthropy and engagement — while transforming the lives of nearly 17,000 students in Stephenville, Fort Worth, Waco, Bryan and online. True to Tarleton’s values of excellence, integrity and respect, academic programs emphasize real world learning and address regional, state and national needs.