Student Success entails retention-based initiatives that engage students in informal and informal initiatives that foster key areas of retention, such as mattering, early intervention, identity-based programming, and college readiness.

College Readiness & GEAR UP Partnerships

College readiness refers to the set of skills, knowledge, and behaviors students develop before their first year. It can help students find success while at the University of Iowa. Academic Support & Retention partners with organizations such as the Iowa Department of Education: Future Ready Iowa, Iowa Higher Education Mathematics Transition Advisory Council, and Iowa College Aid that focus more on building relationships and creating pathways that connect K-12 and higher education in ways that result in helping students across the state of Iowa become better prepared for post-secondary opportunities. 

Iowa College Aid has received a series of grants to support the establishment of GEAR UP (Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs) Iowa, a program supporting underserved students to prepare, enroll and persist through college. Through these grants, University of Iowa partners support GEAR UP students in preparing them to enroll and succeed in college and supporting them if they attend the University of Iowa.  


Excelling@Iowa provides staff and faculty with an actionable platform to support undergraduate student success at the University through integrated, coordinated, and proactive support. In addition to housing information about the new student transition gathered through the Excelling@Iowa Transition Survey, the Excelling@Iowa platform also supports an institution-wide referral platform, mass emailing capabilities, some MAUI records, and additional campus integrations.

1stGen@Iowa & First-Gen Forward

The 1stGen@Iowa initiative aims to bring awareness to campus and work towards a strategic, collective approach to celebrating and supporting first-generation students. While the First-Generation Task Force serves as the foundational basis of this important initiative. The University of Iowa received a First-Gen Forward Designation from the NASPA Center for First-Generation Student Success. The task force's objective is to have Iowa be the first-gen ready as an institution. Both of these movements are campus-wide and rely on institutional commitment from key leaders and multiple campus partners for success.

First-Gen Hawks

Provide first-gen students multiple student success practices within and beyond the classroom through experiential learning to increase sense of belonging, perceive value of the curriculum, academic self-efficacy, retention rates, and graduation rates. Program components include seminar courses, academic coaching, peer mentorship, and expertiential learning.

Individual Student Support

The Academic Support & Retention staff serves as one entry point for individualized student support. Most often, students are referred to AS&R for academic skills needs, like time management, study skills, or communicating with instructors. Occasionally these meetings result in higher-level student needs like mental health concerns, disability accommodations needs, or lack of consistent access to basic needs like housing and food and are referred to the Early Intervention Team, which is co-coordinated by AS&R and Student Care & Assistance in the Office of the Dean of Students.