John N. Gardner Institute for Excellence in Undergraduate Education

Learn More about Improving the Transfer Experience for STEM Students

Several weeks ago President Barack Obama and Michelle Obama came to Asheville, N.C. for a three day weekend “vacation.” This is of interest to me because my wife, Betsy Barefoot, and I live about 35 miles outside of Asheville in a peaceful little mountain town, Brevard. By all the press accounts, the first couple really enjoyed Asheville. They visited a popular barbecue restaurant, “12 Bones,” and the world-famous Biltmore House, played golf, and, unlike the Governor of South Carolina, actually hiked the Appalachian Trail.

Most notably though, they stayed at a historic resort hotel, The Grove Park Inn, a century old world-class establishment. I tell you this because you too can come to Asheville in September and stay at the Grove Park Inn. But instead of being on vacation, you can spend two productive days learning and thinking about what you can do to improve the transfer student experience of a particular cohort of students this country needs more of: STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) Transfers. Click here to learn more. The University of North Texas’s National Institute for the Study of Transfer Students (NISTS), led by two UNT education professors, Bonita Jacobs and Marc Cutright, will host this new conference scheduled for September 19-21, 2010.

Given the enormous need our country has for STEM graduates, and the fact that the transfer experience is now the normative one in US higher education, I wouldn’t miss this upcoming conference where the Obama’s like to go on vacation. I will hope to see you there and learn with you.

-John N. Gardner

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