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Operation Excel Summer Bridge Program Students Perform Well, Earn Scholarships

Ferris State UniversityThirteen Ferris State University students enrolled in the Operation Excel Summer Bridge Program earned a 3.0 GPA or higher in this program and have been awarded scholarships.

"We are extremely enthusiastic about the success of our second cohort of students in Operation Excel," said William Potter, associate provost of Retention and Student Success. "These thirteen students spent their summer dedicated to mastering courses college-level algebra and reading, along with taking a college success course. They should take great pride in the work they did to prepare themselves to directly enter their intended college degree program."

The short-term Excel goal is for successful students to address necessary developmental course needs by the first fall semester, helping them become integrated with their program faculty and classmates sooner, and saving at least one semester of enrollment (valued at approximately $10,000 in 2013). The long-term goals of this acceleration of enrollment and completion will be to save students money, reduce the amount they need to borrow, and help them achieve their college and career goals sooner.

The Operation Excel initiative was a joint venture of the Developmental Programs department, Mathematics department and Residential Life under the sponsorship of the Retention and Student Success unit in Academic Affairs. Potter credits the faculty and staff members for the continued success of the program.

"Our faculty and staff members worked with these students during the last half of the summer so that they could benefit from the Excel experience," Potter said. "Our founder Woodbridge N. Ferris believed in providing opportunities for success through the attainment of higher education, and our faculty and staff remain dedicated to carrying out that vision."

Successful students each qualified for a $1,000 scholarship for the 2013-14 academic year. The scholarship recipients include:

  • Kaytlin Davidson, Big Rapids, Mich.
  • Kristin Kennedy, Crete, Ill.
  • Jenny Ladd, Cadillac, Mich.
  • Ciara Maddison, Jackson, Mich.
  • Robert Olkowski, Washington Twp., Mich.
  • Chelsey Porter, Cadillac, Mich.
  • D'Vonte Relford, Wixom, Mich.
  • Hannah Rosenberger, Grand Rapids, Mich.
  • Olivia Slaven, Trenton, Mich.
  • Quiyna Tolbert, Grand Rapids, Mich.
  • Haelee Varner, Jackson, Mich.
  • Christopher Whitmore, Mount Morris, Mich.
  • Seth DuVall, Remus, Mich.

The Retention and Student Success unit provides a variety of courses and support programs to students seeking to improve their academic readiness or to determine their career path. Its faculty are committed to developing and offering educational opportunities that prepare students for the academic challenges of university life. The staff provides services to promote personal, academic, cultural and social growth according to the principles of adult learning and development.