A photo of Pres. Choi and MU administrators with staff and students from the Discovery Center and Learning Center.

(Left to right) John Middleton, associate vice president for academic affairs, Jim Spain, vice provost for undergraduate studies, Olo Masiza, student assistant, Chris Dobbs, Learning Center interim director, Claire Nyi,  student assistant, Cecilia Olivares, Transfer Center and Discovery Center director and President Choi.

The Student Success Center is our hub for academic excellence. Located on Lowry Mall, the center houses eight programs that support students throughout their time on campus.

Joined by fellow administrators John Middleton and Jim Spain, we met with leaders from two of those programs – Director Cecilia Olivares of the Discovery Center and Interim Director Chris Dobbs of the Learning Center – who shared their impact and discussed how we can better serve our incredible students.

This semester, 450 first-time college students and 53 transfer students arrived at Mizzou as “Exploring” majors. Those students are paired with an academic advisor from the Discovery Center to help them choose a path that fits their values. Their team also partners with the Career Center and other campus resources to help all students – whether finding or changing majors – to achieve their goals.

Building off that important work, the Learning Center teaches proven strategies for improving academic performance including: exam preparation, note-taking, self-care and wellness. This semester, their team (and nearly 80 student tutors and academic coaches) have hosted more than 3,000 drop-in sessions, with thousands more student contacts online.

A great example of our holistic support in action is Olo Masiza, a computer science and philosophy major who attended a university in South Africa before transferring to Mizzou. Olo visited the Student Success Center his first semester and is now a student assistant for the Discovery Center and Transfer Center. During our visit, he was joined at the front desk by another student assistant, Claire Nyi, a social work major. They are part of a team who answer questions and direct fellow students to helpful resources.

I enjoyed meeting Olo, Claire and everyone supporting student excellence.

— Mun


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