Conferences and Continuing Education













Our Invitation to You

* Registration Now Open

The National Resource Center is pleased to now offer online courses on current topics related to the first-year experience and students in transition. Online courses are designed to come as close as possible to providing students with the same course content and opportunities for interaction with classmates and with the instructor as traditional or classroom-based courses as well as take advantage of pedagogy and teaching techniques that are not possible or uncommon in a traditional format. Our online courses will take place during a four-week or five-week period with the majority of instruction occurring in an asynchronous environment. Asynchronous instruction is neither time bound nor place-bound and does not require the simultaneous participation of all students and instructors. It utilizes tools such as email, threaded discussions/forums, listservs, and blog.

Participants will earn 1.5 continuing education units.

The Bridge to Anywhere: Enhancing Student Success and Institutional Impact Through Bridge Programs

Andrew (Drew) Newton
Assistant Director of First-Year Advising
University of South Carolina-Columbia

Andrew (Drew) Newton currently serves as the Assistant Director of First-Year Advising at the University of South Carolina-Columbia.  In collaboration with academic leadership, Drew guides the standardization of academic advising across 11 colleges and schools for over 6,000 incoming freshmen and transfer students through 28 talented full time professional academic advisors.  Prior to his work with academic advising, Drew served as director of the university's residential bridge program, Gamecock Gateway, while also leading transfer and veteran student success initiatives.  Beyond higher education, Drew has also served as a middle school teacher and K-12 department chair.  A native of Farmville, Virginia, Drew completed his Bachelor of Arts in English and Secondary Education from James Madison University and his Master of Education in Higher Education/Student Affairs from the University of South Carolina.

Registration Deadline
Course Capacity

July 31 - August 25, 2017

July 14, 2017 25 Registrants $425.00


Expanding access.  Enhancing preparation.  Streamlining transfer and student transitions.  Bridge programs do all this and more.  The need for post-secondary education has never been greater, and neither has the necessity of effective partnerships to take students from point A to point B in their progression toward degree.  In this online course, students will be introduced to three primary bridge possibilities:  residential bridge; non-residential bridge; and summer/transition bridge programs.  Through literary review, exploration of best practices, and dialogue with practitioners in the field, students will develop a bridge program action plan and guiding documents that could be furthered at their institutions while proactively determining how the programs can be assessed.


As a result of this online course, students will:

  • Understand the literature and best practices behind residential bridge partnerships between institutions

  • Understand the literature and best practices behind non-residential bridge partnerships/articulation agreements between institutions

  • Understand the literature and best practices behind summer bridge programs 

  • Engage in dialogue with practitioners engaged all the respective bridge programs

  • Develop the framework for an institution-specific residential, non-residential, or summer bridge program using research and best practices explored

  • Create tools and metrics to assess the effectiveness of bridge programs

Fostering First-Year Student Success

Stephanie M. Foote, Ph.D.
Director, Master of Science in First-Year Studies
Professor of Education
Department of First-Year and Transition Studies

Stephanie M. Foote, Ph.D. is the Director of the Master of Science in First-Year Studies and Professor of Education in the Department of First-Year and Transition Studies at Kennesaw State University. Prior to this, she was the administrator for academic success and first-year programs at the University of South Carolina Aiken.

Foote earned her Ph.D. from the University of South Carolina in Educational Administration-Higher Education. She is a past recipient of the NODA Outstanding Research Award for her dissertation study of semester of college and she was recently selected as the recipient of the McGraw-Hill Excellence in Teaching First-Year Seminars award.

Her current scholarly interests include self-authorship development in transfer students, the role of first-year seminars and experiential pedagogy on student engagement in the early college experience, and engagement in online learning environments. Foote is a co-principal investigator on the Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education (FIPSE)-First in the World Program (FITW) grant ($3.2 million award), Strengthening bridges for student success: Increasing transfer and completion rates for underrepresented, underprepared, and low-income community and technical college students seeking four-year degrees.

Additionally, Foote is the leading author of College Students in Transition: An Annotated Bibliography, and she developed and taught the online course, Fostering First-Year Student Success for the National Resource Center for the First-Year Experience and Students in Transition annually since 2010. Foote is currently a guest co-editor of a special "Fostering Success for Students in Transition" issue of the Journal of College and Student university Housing, she currently serves on the editorial board for the Journal of Student Affairs Research and Practice (JSARP), and is the editor for the Journal of College Orientation and Transition (JCOT).

Registration Deadline
Course Capacity

September 18 - October 13, 2017

September 6, 2017 40 Registrants $425.00


This course is designed to engage participants in an exploration of the fundamental aspects of first-year student success. Drawing from multiple perspectives, participants in the course will be challenged to: a) move beyond generational characteristics to fully understand who first year students are and what issues potentially impact their success; b) apply the information generated through readings, reflective assignments, and discussion to innovate practices aimed at fostering first-year student success; and c) develop a variety of qualitative and quantitative methods that can be used to measure first-year student success.  


As a result of this online course, students will:

  • Participants will identify issues that impact the success of first-year students on their campus.

  • Participants will develop strategies and transform existing practices to encourage first-year student success.

  • Participants will understand how to use qualitative and quantitative methods to measure first-year student success.

    Textbook (required)
    Upcraft, M. L., Gardner, J. N., & Barefoot, B. O. (2005). Challenging & supporting the
    first-year student: A handbook for improving the first year of college. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.