GREENVILLE, Pa.—Students in Thiel College’s Excel Opportunities Program will arrive on campus on Aug. 10. The Excel Program is an immersive learning experience that offers an introduction to the resources available at Thiel College and to the college-level work and challenges first-year students can encounter.
Thiel designed the program for the large number of first-generation college students they receive each year. About half of the students that attend Thiel are first-generation—meaning that this is their family’s first encounter with a college. The Excel Program was put in place to prepare these students to get the most out of their four-year experience. First-year students arrive two weeks before the fall semester. During this time the students have a seminar-style class that aids them in developing:
Students develop a clear understanding of their learning strengths and needs as well as the many resources available as they transition to college. Part of this is getting assigned to an academic coach in the Thiel Learning Commons who will guide them and monitor their progress throughout the academic year.
Though the program is designed for first-generation students, it is encouraged for all high school graduates preparing to come to Thiel College. Students who completed the seminar course as part of the Excel Program earned more credits in the fall semester and were nearly twice as likely to remain in college than students who were invited to the program but opted out.
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