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Academic program seeks to help students focus

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By DaMarkus James

da.james@colostate-pueblo.edu

“Back on Track,” a new summer school program, aims to help students focus academically and will be offered at CSU-Pueblo this summer, May 16 through June 13. 

The program provides students the chance to re-take courses they failed, said Rick Kreminski, dean of the College of Science and Mathematics. Students can enroll to earn better grades for their classes, he said.

“Sometimes they do fine their first semester, and maybe they’re hit with financial issues or issues in their personal lives, or maybe more extended family concerns come up. Maybe they just aren’t motivated,” Kreminski said.

Kreminski said he thought of the “Back on Track” theme randomly.

“The problem is there are some students fall off track. I came up with the ‘Back on Track’ metaphor when I was jogging or something, thinking ‘that’s a real Colorado thing,’” Kreminski said. “Lots of people like to hike in Colorado, and you wander off the track.”   

Students can attend weekly counseling to help boost their GPA and go to Student Support Services for tutoring, he said. Professors will also help students pass their classes, said Derek Lopez, director of first-year programs.

The program offers incentives for students in order to boost its enrollment, Lopez said.

Students will get tuition discounts on certain general education courses, such as English 101 and 102, psychology 100, biology 223 and math 121, he said. Some freshmen and sophomores seem to fail or struggle with these classes, Kreminski said.

In addition, there will be discounts available for textbooks in the university’s bookstore, and for housing and dining, Kreminski said.

“We were able to pay for faculty time through some grant funding we had that helps us to pilot new programs to help students,” Lopez said.

The incentives would also fund the university and generate revenue, Lopez said.    

“Back on Track” also gives students the opportunity to help them catch up on their college credits and do well academically, Kreminski said. The tutoring services and academic counseling with faculty are a couple services to help students catch up, Kreminski said. The program tries to prevent students from dropping out, Kreminski said.

Kreminski researched and sent mail and emails to freshmen and sophomores on GPA alert and academic probation this spring semester, he said. There are students who might not be able to enroll in “Back on Track” because of financial problems, Kreminski said.   

Students are placed on academic probation for the fall and spring semesters if their cumulative GPA is below 2.0, according to the university’s online catalog. Moreover, they have the fall and spring semesters to raise their GPA above a 2.0, the catalog stated.

To find out more information about “Back on Track,” call the First Year Center at (719)549-2584 or Kreminski at (719)549-2340, or visit the Occhiato University Center, Room 214.