Effect of Scholars Academy Summer Program Participation on Participants' Academic Success
The purpose of this study was to determine if there were any statistically significant differences in the persistence and retention rates of minority participants in a summer bridge program in comparison to the persistence and retention rates of minority non-participants who entered the university in the same fall semester. The years examined were 2012-2015. The summer bridge program named The Scholars Academy program was a pre-freshman intervention at Middle Tennessee State University, a public four-year institution, located in Murfreesboro, Tennessee. An ex-post facto, quantitative research design was utilized. Archival data were used for the years examined. Pearson’s chi square analyses were used for statistical analysis. Descriptive statistics included ACT mean scores and high school grade point averages for both groups – minority participants and minority non-participants—and the total group. The results from testing the two null hypotheses suggest that there were no statistically significant differences relative to persistence rates between the two groups for the years 2012-2015. However, statistically significant differences were noted for the years 2014 and 2015 for retention rates. The minority Scholars Academy participants were retained at higher rates as compared to the minority non-Scholars Academy participants. Interestingly, those two years evidenced a large scaling of the program. It should be noted that features to the program were added and adjusted during the featured timeframe. Some implications for practitioners include scaling the summer bridge program to beyond double digits, positioning the summer portion for it to end right before the fall semester begins, as well as training peer mentors to lead small groups of ten participants. Recommendations for further research include the utilization of Schlossberg’s Theory of Transition and conducting a study comparing the number of participants with the number of non-participants who earn graduate degrees.
"Effect of Scholars Academy Summer Program Participation on Participants' Academic Success"
ETD Collection for Tennessee State University.