Promoting Diversity and Student Success in Higher Education: A Perspective from Outside the US

Please join us for a presentation and open-discussion on effective strategies for increasing the participation and success rates of underrepresented or “at-risk” populations in higher education.

If you are interested in diversity and retention initiatives in post-secondary settings, we invite you to a lecture by Dr. Rachelle Thibodeau focusing on the Enriched Support Program at Carleton University in Ottawa, Canada, a successful and long-standing support intervention focusing on student success. Dr. Thibodeau’s talk will be followed by an open-forum discussion to share ideas and forge new perspectives on our work here at UC.

Times, detailed information about Dr. Thibodeau’s talk, and a link to RSVP are included below:


       July 18th, Langsam Library Room 571

                11:30-12:30 Dr. Rachelle Thibodeau lecture

                12:30-1:30 Open Discussion and Lunch


If you are interested in attending, RSVP at the following link. We will follow up with additional information regarding lunch orders:


Additional details about Dr. Thibodeau’s talk and the ESP program are included below:

The Enriched Support Program at Carleton University in Ottawa, Canada is a one-year transition-to-university program. ESP offers an alternative route to university admission for academically “at-risk” students who do not meet traditional entrance requirements. Over 80% of students who fully participate earn admission to a degree program, and they go on to graduate at the same rate as regularly-admitted students.

The program, which recently celebrated its 20th anniversary, is unique in several ways. First, it is open to students whose high-school grades or community-college grades do not qualify them for admission to university, regardless of their demographic group. Second, ESP students are fully integrated into regular classes and all other aspects of campus life. Third, ESP provides integrated, wrap-around learning supports from a single academic department. Finally, the program is entirely self-funded.

We invite you to come and learn about this unique program and the lessons learned through 20 years of innovative education. We’ll address how ESP’s unique features have fostered its success and survival and reflect on some missteps and lessons learned. 

Dr. Rachelle Thibodeau


Speaker Bio:

Dr. Rachelle Thibodeau works as a program coordinator in Carleton University’s Centre for Initiatives in Education and as an Adjunct Professor in the Department of Psychology. Since 1996, she has developed and led peer-learning programs focused on access and success for underprepared and marginalized learners. She also teaches a fourth-year writing seminar for psychology students and researches the connection between social class, identity, and academic success.