Innovate: As a national innovation cluster, UIA institutions will identify promising and innovative interventions to advance the goal of graduating more diverse and low-income students. Scale: The UIA will provide valuable insight into how to scale or duplicate innovative ideas into new contexts more effectively and thus expand the reach of promising innovations. Diffuse: The UIA will encourage practitioners around the country to learn about, apply and utilize innovations on their own campuses – and then discuss their successes and experiences with still more audiences.

Current Projects

In 2014, UIA institutions implemented student success management systems that aided in proactive advising strategies. These tools were used in varying capacities to address the retention needs of each campus.

The tools used at KU provided our campus with appointment scheduling, early alert, and predictive analytic capabilities. During the Fall 2018 semester, we started rolling out our current system, Jayhawk GPS. This new system provides us with new functionality designed to assist advisors and ehnhances how students engage with their academic advising experience.

The UIA's study, Monitoring Academic Analytics to Promote Student Success (MAAPS), seeks to validate the effectiveness of proactive advising in increasing retention, progression, and graduation rates for low-income and first generation university students. Funded by the U.S. Department of Education's First in the World (FITW) Grant Competition, MAAPS is a randomized control trial that provides the treatment group with enhanced advising interventions in addition to the university's normal advising services. The control group will continue to receive the university's normal advising services. Given the design of the study, results have the promise to influence U.S. higher education to adopt more intentional and proactive advising strategies that increase student's likelihood of timely degree completion.
The Jayhawk Completion Grant was designed to provide microgrants to students in the final year of their degree program. The aim of this program was to get these students to graduation without an outstanding balance that may prevent them from registering for the classes in their last semester or obtaining their diploma after graduation. This grant is no longer available to students.
The Collegiate Leaders in Increasing MoBility—or CLIMB—Research Initiative is a partnership between leading higher education economists, policymakers, and a diverse set of U.S. colleges and universities. The study seeks to understand not only which colleges act as engines of intergenerational mobility, but why, and how schools and policymakers can promote opportunity and economic growth by helping larger numbers of low-income students reach the middle class.


“Collaboration allows us to be nimble and try new things to ensure the greatest possibility of student success.”

Chancellor Douglas A. Girod, M.D.

UIA Campus Leads

Dr. Susan Klusmeier
UIA Liaison & Vice Provost for Academic Success
Academic Success
Sean Navarro
UIA Fellow & Assistant Director, Military-Affiliated Student Center
Academic Success


UIA Working Group

Karen Ledom
Director, College Advising & Student Services
College of Liberal Arts and Sciences
Bridget Bradley
Assistant Director, College Advising & Student Services
College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

Abby Coffin
Undergraduate Advising Center
LaTisha Davis
Associate Director, TRIO SES & OPTIONS Coordinator
Center for Educational Opportunity Programs

Gretchen Heasty
Director, TRIO SES & STEM
Center for Educational Opportunity Programs
Eugene Parker
Assistant Professor, Educational Leadership & Policy Studies
School of Education

Meagan Patterson
Associate Professor, Educational Psychology & Faculty Fellow
School of Education & Center for Teaching Excellence
Andrew Shoemaker
University Academic Support Centers

Leah Nicholson
Assistant Director
Financial Aid & Scholarships


UIA Partner Institutions

University of Kansas

Arizona State University

Georgia State University

Iowa State University

Michigan State University

Oregon State University

Purdue University

The Ohio State University

University of California - Riverside

University of Central Florida

University of Texas at Austin

About the UIA

Founded in 2014, the University Innovation Alliance is a coalition of eleven public research universities spanning the geographic, economic and social diversity of our country. UIA member institutions serve large numbers of first generation, low-income students, and seek to increase economic opportunity and mobility. Many of our universities have been recognized for aggressively driving innovations to serve more students with quality programs at sustainable cost. Now, we are going to work together to leverage our strengths and maximize our impact.


UIA efforts at the University of Kansas are coordinated through Academic Success.  If you have any questions or feedback regarding UIA initiatives at KU please email the Academic Success, or call (785) 864-4907.

For general information and updates regarding UIA efforts please visit its website.  You can also follow their blog and social media through Twitter or Facebook

One of 34 U.S. public institutions in the prestigious Association of American Universities
44 nationally ranked graduate programs.
—U.S. News & World Report
Top 50 nationwide for size of library collection.
5th nationwide for service to veterans —"Best for Vets: Colleges," Military Times
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