New student programs: Solving for tomorrow’s graduation rate

Posted by
On September 20, 2023

New student programs PRO Leaders

Cody Mantle, new student programs manager, poses with a group of PRO leaders during Opening Week.

Pictured from left: Cody Mantle, manager of new student programs, and Abby Mayes, student service coordinator.

Helping the university attain one goal, new student programs (NSP) is expanding its impact to increase graduation rates. New student programs serves all undergraduate students including first-year, transfer and international students. Cody Mantle and Abby Mayes lead the department, and they rely heavily on student workers, called PRO leaders, as they prepare, plan and execute the plethora of events the department hosts.

The recent success of Opening Week has left new student programs (NSP) little time to recover as the team starts to prepare for next semester’s advising and registration events. Opening Week kicked off with move-in day, Convocation and Party at the Puck. Over 1,200 students were placed in mentor groups led by volunteer upperclassmen who are selectively chosen based on certain criteria. Mentors not only encourage participation in Opening Week activities, but they also serve as friendly faces and liaisons for incoming students.

Cody and Abby are helped by PRO Leaders, who are students vetted from all colleges and majors across the entire campus. Each PRO Leader represents different groups and activities on campus such as band, cross country, National Society of Black Engineers, the Concrete Canoe Design Team and the recently reinstated Alpha Phi Alpha. Each member is invested in the NSP team and is responsible for planning these events and creating a solid group of individuals to pass their success on to the next generation of students.

Students also worked on a team-building exercise throughout Opening Week that ended in a head-to-head competition against other mentor teams. Although students competed to build and race a remote-controlled car, the task isn’t just tailored for engineering students. Team members had to utilize all majors to design components like banners and flags and a creatively written analysis of their team’s success to make their team stand out among other competitors. The event was a perfect opportunity to demonstrate S&T’s diversity and show that every student has a place and a space at Missouri S&T.

The first advising and registration event starts in November for spring 2024 admitted students and each event NSP hosts takes months to plan and implement. This requires cooperation from the campus community to reserve the spaces, coordinate movements and speakers from organizations, and assign advisors to incoming students.

Students who attend get swag to show Miner pride and receive their student IDs with custom advising and registration lanyards touting “Officially a Miner.” Every student leaves the event advised and registered for classes. Students and guests are welcome to go on specialized tours that feature the main campus, residence halls, Greek housing and the Student Design and Experiential Learning Center.

The advising and registration experience is designed to change the narrative of an event from “required” to one that is desired. NSP is successfully showcasing a culture where students view campus as not just a place to attend classes, but rather, a community.

Cody, Abby and the PRO leaders are always looking for additional help and support from students, faculty and staff. Make sure to stop by Room 103 Norwood and say hi next time you’re passing through.

Share this page

Posted by

On September 20, 2023. Posted in Other