Dear Wilberforce Family,
Welcome to the Division of Student Development and Enrollment Management (SDEM) webpage. This page is designed to give you simple and fast access to information about SDEM and how we are waiting to make the time at Wilberforce rewarding and productive. The SDEM division is designed to make the transition into college and throughout “seamless” because our ultimate goal is to assist students and their families with the goal of their child obtaining a college degree.
The Division of Student Development and Enrollment Management (SDEM) is responsible for supporting students in their growth and development over time and to support their curricular pursuits by providing learning experiences out side of the classroom to the Residence Halls and beyond. The primary aim and purpose in doing the latter is to impact enrollment and retention of students by providing avenues for students to be involved in campus life and by ensuring a dynamic quality student life experience for all students. Astin (1989) states that the more a student is involved in their campus life the more likely they are to persist. Tinto (1987) states that there are several key components to creating a successful retention plan or retention program: comprehensive orientation and transition program for students; meaningful faculty and student interaction; institutional commitment to retention and modes of helping the student integrate and stay connected to the community. The literature supports the development of a division that effectively transitions students into the community and then provides support to complement the classroom instruction and faculty interaction. Students attend Wilberforce to again theoretical knowledge through their interactions with faculty and practical experience through their COOP experience. SDEM’s role is to co-curricularly support students in academic pursuits and goals and to challenge them when they fall short of effectively achieving those goals.
I am excited about the year that lies ahead and anticipate the many triumphs and successes that students will encounter this year. In turn, I realize that there may be periods of challenge and obstacles to overcome, but I believe that students will make the best decisions possible during those trying times and that they will rise from those experiences a stronger more capable individual.
Please know that the faculty and staff of the university are here for support. A student’s decision to enroll in college places them one step closer to actualizing their dreams and accomplishing their goals and we are committed to assisting them in making that happen. In turn, our students will have to be equally committed and this will mean that they will have to have faith, work hard, be prepared, think critically, care deeply and always strive for excellence in all that they do. I am certain that our students have the belief in themselves to make their hopes reality and the SDEM team and I have high expectations for our students and consider ourselves blessed to be with them every step of the way.