To some, graduation day is something many parents look forward to along with their child who will cross the stage. But for many, this day does not come on time.
For those who have problems with graduation, the Academic Affairs Institution and Research Program at FAMU keeps track of graduation inquiries and statistics.
The department measures first-time college students and tracks each student’s process toward graduation each year. Each student is measured as a co-hort. A co-hort is everyone who comes in at a particular year.
The statistics show that those students who came in 1997 and graduated in 2003 (within a six year period) had a graduation rate of 44.3 percent, while those who came in 1997 and graduated in 2002 (within a four-year period) had rates of 16.7 percent.
The students who began in 1998 and graduated in 2004 (within a six year period) increased to 45.6 percent, while those who came in 1998 and graduated within a four-year period remained the same, 16.7 percent.
According to the statistics, more students are graduating within a six-year period, rather than in the traditional four-year time frame.
Reasons for the extended years in college could be due to several reasons such as family issues, financial problems, internships, failing classes or just taking a break.
“Six years is long, but at least students are graduating,” said Lynn Robinson, 22, a third-year business administration student from Victorville, Calif.
According to University officials, there has been thoughts for plans to have students graduate in a shorter time span than the six years.
“The University has designed plans and initiatives to improve the graduation rates,” said Herman Brann, associate vice president of Institution Research.
Even with possible plans to improve the rates of graduation to help the school with a higher success rate and make room for the incoming freshmen, a faster graduation rate seems primarily left up to the student.
Alexia Elie, 21, a third-year business administration student from Fort Lauderdale claimed ” I don’t feel that I can be hurried to finish school, because I know that too many things are going on in my life for me to be able to finish in four years. School is my main priority, but at times I have to do other things and find motivation to help myself continue on with school. I can only take it a day at a time.”
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