AHANA Retention Conference Next Month

AHANA Retention Conference Next Month

The Office of AHANA Student Programs, highly regarded for its success at seeing students of color through to graduation, will host a conference Oct. 21-22 on the retention of African, Hispanic, Asian and Native American students.

"Models of Success: Retention of AHANA Students from Elementary Through College Years" will draw educators from across the country as well as representatives from several area school programs that have taken innovative approaches to retaining students of color.

B C is credited with setting an example for institutions seeking to retain AHANA students. By providing services such as academic advising, tutoring and personal counseling, the AHANA Office has seen the AHANA retention rate at BC rise from 17 percent two decades ago to more than 8 0 percent today.

A series of distinguished speakers will highlight the event, which will begin in the Heights Room of the Lower Campus Dining Hall, followed by an exhibition of successful retention programs.

The conference will begin at 2 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 21, with presentations on educational environments by professors from Syracuse and Ohio State universities.

The presentation of model programs will begin at 4:30 p.m. , featuring the Gardner School Partnership, which includes BC ; Paige Academy and Nativity Prep School of Roxbury; MASS PEP, a pre-engineering program at Wentworth Institute; Rhode Island College's Upward Bound; and the Urban Scholars Program of the University of Massachusetts-Boston Graduate School of Education.

A 9 a.m. panel presentation in the Heights Room on educational research affecting AHANA students will kick off the next day's schedule. Speakers will include Lynch School of Education Dean Mary Brabeck and Boisi Professor of Education George Madaus , among others.

In the afternoon in Gasson 100, AHANA Student Programs Director Donald Brown and staff will discuss their office's approach, with other presentations by representatives of Northwestern University and the University of Maryland.

"Many of our AHANA students have gone on to become lawyers, doctors and educators because BC gave them a chance they did not have before," said Brown. "I hope other schools with low retention rates can benefit from our experiences."

-Mark Sullivan

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