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Supporting First-Generation, Low-Income, and Underrepresented Students’ Transitions to College Through Comprehensive and Integrated Programs

Kezar & Kitchen, 2019 / American Behavioral Scientist / August 2019

Hidden Crisis on College Campuses

This special issue of American Behavioral Scientist focuses on college transition programs that have either comprehensive or integrated designs, exploring whether, how, and why these programs are making progress toward improving success among marginalized student populations to address long-standing retention and completion gaps that have troubled higher education for decades. Comprehensive programs offer a broad range of supports coordinated within a single program. Integrated programs link students to several existing supports on campus so that they essentially become a comprehensive support program. There are multiple institutional and structural factors that can thwart the success and development of underrepresented and marginalized students. Comprehensive and integrated programs represent an opportunity to structure or coordinate an environment within the larger university community that is explicitly oriented toward the particular needs and success of these student populations. This volume of articles focuses on two major comprehensive and integrated programs: (1) the Thompson Scholars Learning Communities program and (2) the California State University STEM Collaboratives Initiative.