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Business Administration Learning Community Launched

By Lydia McGee
On October 13, 2017

The Business Administration Learning Community holds second meeting
Photo By Caleb Zopp

This semester, the Business Administration faculty teamed up to create a Learning Community aimed at involving students early and providing them with a solid foundation while continuing their studies.

    The Learning Community officially launched on September 7.

    “We, as business administration faculty, want to increase the retention and commitment of our students. Our faculty wanting to be more involved with efforts to engage our students early and often inspired the idea of a learning community,” says Amanda Sauchuck, Assistant Professor of Management. “We want to give our students a positive and collaborative environment outside of the classroom to connect with faculty, staff, and peers who have similar interests in education and business.”

    During their September 21 meeting, attendees received one-on-one attention from gathered faculty. The large time frame offered ample opportunity to share future projects and to engage in individualized academic discussion.

    While one of the goals of the Learning Community is to function as a support to freshman in particular, upperclassmen will, ideally, play a mentor role in the new process, according to Susan Robinett, Department Chair of Business and Recreation Tourism Management and collaborator on the project. According to Sauchuck, “Once we build the learning community, our goal is to identify upperclassmen to help mentor freshman. This peer mentoring relationship has been proved to increase academic achievement.”

    “Although this will be the first semester of our learning community, research suggests that students who actively participate in a learning community perform better academically and earn better grades, form lasting friendships and study groups with fellow students early on, connect with faculty advisor and teachers, transition more easily to college life, know more about the resources and services offered at the University, find an immediate sense of place within the university, and ultimately get more out of their first semester,” says Sauchuck.

    The meetings will focus on the important activities that students must demonstrate proficiency in order to be successful in their field. “Our meetings will include a wide range of activities and topics including discussions about the business administration program or current events in business, course issues or concerns, tutoring, special projects, or student needs,” outlines Sauchuck. “For example, our October 19th meeting will be focused on best practices for resume writing as we have had a number of students ask for more assistance in this area.”

    Currently, students join the Community of their own accord. Since the philosophy largely centers on enrichment and student initiative, extra credit will not be offered for these activities in the foreseeable future. The Learning Community will function to supplement, rather than take the place of, academic advising. Its specific nature, however, allows the administrators to provide more student-specific support directly pertaining to the field of Business and the student’s needs.

    The next meetings take place on October 12 and 19 and November 2 and 16, from 4-6 p.m., in Rahall room 103 across from the Grip Center.

    For more information about the Learning Community, contact Amanda Sauchuck at or speak with your academic advisor.

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