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updated: 01/08/09

National Symposium on Student Retention Logo


The National Symposium on Student Retention is focused on sharing current research and evidence-based strategies which support college student success from enrollment through graduation. Building bridges and promoting an institutional culture that encourages student success is important. This conference provides opportunities for dialogue, networking, and shared understanding with colleagues who are working on issues related to student retention and success. It showcases successful, effective programs and strategies and best practices of four-year and two-year institutions.

The 10th Annual National Symposium on Student Retention was an unprecedented success, setting new records for paper submissions, exhibitors and attendance, and garnering rave reviews from everyone! We all found Mercy College President Tim Hall’s speech to be tremendously inspiring and the CSRDE was able to record it.

President Tim Hall's Plenary Speech: "Creating a Campus Culture for Student Success"

Please Plan to Join Us for our 2015 Symposium

The 11th Annual National Symposium on Student Retention will take place November 2-4, 2015 at the DoubleTree by Hilton Orlando at SeaWorld. This hotel has stellar conference facilities, as well as being the consummate vacation resort. The Call for Proposals will be sent out in late January, so watch here for updates or email CSRDE to be added to our listserve.

Clark Memorial Bridge spans the Ohio River with the Louisville skyline at night
As we focus on Building Bridges for Student Success, what better place to hold our 10th Annual National Symposium on Student Retention than Louisville, Kentucky - a city of bridges? The rapids of the Ohio River created a barrier to river travel, and Louisville grew up at this pausing point. Where once the only way to cross was by ferry, three bridges now span the river at downtown Louisville, connecting it to Clarksville, Indiana.

Tenth Annual
National Symposium on Student Retention

"Building Bridges for Student Success"

November 3-5, 2014

Hyatt Regency Louisville

Louisville, KY


Our 2014 National Symposium on Student Retention was a big success

Plan to Join Us in 2015!
Email the CSRDE to be added to our listserve


Conference Details


2014 Schedule Available Online

Watch for Updates on the 2015 Symposium

Call for Proposals Opens in Late January


Who Should Attend

The National Symposium on Student Retention offers participants a complete educational experience, with opportunities for collaboration and networking among leaders and peers working to understand and improve student success. Informative sessions are coupled with a collegial atmosphere to facilitate networking and interaction among participants. Executives, administrators, institutional researchers, faculty and staff from the academic and student support areas will find this symposium useful and informative. Institutions often send several representatives to the conference in order to take advantage of the many sessions offered.


Keynote Speaker

Picture of Timothy L. Hall
Tim Hall became president of Mercy College in Dobbs Ferry, New York in May 2014. Prior to moving to New York, he served as president of Austin Peay State University in Clarksville, Tennessee. There, he gained national attention as a higher education leader devoted to innovation and student success. In Hall’s last two years at Austin Peay, the university was recognized on the honor roll of the Chronicle of Higher Education’s Great Colleges to Work for Survey. Moreover, in 2013 the nonprofit organization, Public Agenda, released a report titled “Seven Practices of Enlightened Leadership in Higher Education: A Case Study of Austin Peay State University,” which highlighted the collaborative environment at the institution. In addition, President Obama recognized Austin Peay State University in August 2013 for its innovation in promoting student success. Prior to becoming president of Austin Peay, Hall served many years on the law faculty at the University of Mississippi and then as associate provost there. He is graduated from the University of Houston with a B.A. in philosophy, and received his J.D. from the University of Texas in 1983.



Conference Schedule Overview

The Conference Schedule is now available online.

The symposium begins with an optional trip to Churchill Downs for breakfast on the backstretch and the Kentucky Derby Museum on Sunday. This event requires separate, pre-reservation for participation. It is our tradition to identify an optional, unique activity for participants to attend that helps them to meet others in a fun and relaxed venue, and we hope you can join us.

Monday, November 3 will be filled with half-day and full-day pre-conference workshops which require separate registration. Participants attending pre-conference workshops will eat lunch on their own at the hotel restaurant or one of the wide variety of nearby eateries.

The Mayor of Louisville, Greg Fischer, will join us to open the Welcome Reception on Monday evening. The reception will be an excellent opportunity to mingle with colleagues, enjoying an eclectic assortment of tempting hors d'oeuvres in an informal setting.

Tuesday, November 4 and Wednesday, November 5 will mark two full days of conference programming, as well as our Best Practices Award Luncheon. During each concurrent session period, the participants will have the choice of one of several presentations being given in different meeting rooms within the Conference hotel. Please see the Conference Schedule for more information, including the times, locations, and abstracts of the presentations.

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Louisville Slugger Museum exterior with giant baseball bat

7:45 am - noon Churchill Downs & Kentucky Derby Museum (Additional Pre-Registration required)
5:00 pm - 7:00 pm On-site Registration
Monday, November 3, 2014
7:00 am - 4:30 pm On-site Registration
8:00 am - 4:30 pm

Pre-conference Workshops (Optional. Additional Registration required)

5:00 pm - 6:00 pm Welcome Reception and Poster Preview
Tuesday, November 4, 2014
7:00 am - 4:30 pm On-site Registration
7:15 am - 8:15 am Continental Breakfast
8:15 am - 9:30 am Keynote Address
9:45 am - 11:50 am Concurrent Sessions
11:50 am - 1:15 pm Lunch on your own
1:15 pm - 4:30 pm Concurrent Sessions
Wednesday, November 5, 2014
7:00 am - 12:30 pm On-site Registration
7:15 am - 8:15 am Continental Breakfast
7:45 am - 9:00 am Poster Session
9:15 am - 12:30 pm Concurrent Sessions
12:40 pm - 2:00 pm Best Practices Luncheon (included w/ registration)
2:20 pm - 4:15 pm Concurrent Sessions


Pre-Conference Workshops

Monday, November 3, 2014
Lunch will be on your own


Understanding Students’ Path to Graduation and Developing Action Plans to Address Persistence
8:00 am–11:30 am
Catherine Andersen, University of Baltimore
Marguerite Weber, University of Baltimore
Pat Hulsebosch, Gallaudet University
Jerri Lyn Dorminy, Gallaudet University

Retention for Rookies
8:00 am – 11:30 am
Tim Culver, Noel-Levitz, Inc.

Peer Mentoring: Building a Bridge to Student Success
1:00 pm – 4:30 pm
Karen Amrhein, California University of Pennsylvania

Teach Students Metacognition to Transform Learning and Success
1:00 pm – 4:30 pm
Melissa Brocato, Louisiana State University
Pam Ball, Louisiana State University

Benchmarking Retention Data
8:30 am – 4:30 pm
Gerry McLaughlin, DePaul University
Richard Howard, Consultant
Josetta McLaughlin, Roosevelt University
Blake Cannon, Phillips Community College

Examining Your Student Success Data and Programs
8:30 am – 4:30 pm
Bernadette Jungblut, West Virginia University
Charlene Stinard, University of Central Florida
Donielle Maust, West Virginia University
Sally Digman, West Virginia University

Creating a Comprehensive Early Alert Program: Design, Implementation, Intervention and Assessment
8:30 am – 4:30 pm
Loralyn Taylor, Paul Smith’s College
Virginia McAleese, Paul Smith’s College



Morning excercise at Churchill Downs, photo by Sam EnglishOptional Group Event –
Breakfast at Churchill Downs & Kentucky Derby Museum Tour

Sunday, November 2, 7:45 am - noon

Get on our chartered bus for a morning on the backstretch at Churchill Downs. We will savor a full breakfast railside -–directly on the race track–- in the Track Kitchen while watching the horses during their morning workouts. This is usually only available to horsemen and there's no experience quite like it.

The Historic Walking Tour of Churchill Downs will be included in our experience. It's the ‘other side’ of Churchill Downs-– see racehorses in training, catch them during a bath, and learn about life at the track. Stops will be made for picture taking at the track (time and weather permitting). View the Grandstand, Clubhouse, Finish Line and Winner's Circle as our knowledgeable tour guides showcase the history and tradition of Churchill Downs.

The Kentucky Derby Museum, located at Gate 1 of Churchill Downs, offers two floors of interactive exhibits on Thoroughbred racing and the Kentucky Derby, the "Greatest Two Minutes in Sports"™. Visitors can try to call a race, test drive a Thoroughbred on "Riders Up" (the horse racing simulator exhibit), view Derby races dating back to 1918 and much more. The Museum features a 360 degree hi-def film, "The Greatest Race", that puts guests in the heart of the Kentucky Derby action.


Conference Registration Fees

Online registration is open until Friday, October 24 at midnight CDT

Amount Before
September 1st
Amount After
September 1st

CSRDE Member Institutions and Individual Members

Is your institution a member of the Consortium? Check our members’ list
Here's more information on Institutional and Individual membership
Non-CSRDE Members

Pre-Conference Workshop Registration Fees Monday, November 3

Understanding Students’ Path to Graduation and Developing Action Plans to Address Persistence 8:00 am – 11:30 am


Retention for Rookies 8:00 am- 11:30 am


Peer Mentoring: Building a Bridge to Student Success 1:00 pm - 4:30 pm


Teach Students Metacognition to Transform Learning and Success 1:00 pm - 4:30 pm


Benchmarking Retention Data 8:30 am - 4:30 pm



Examining Your Student Success Data and Programs 8:30 am - 4:30 pm



Creating a Comprehensive Early Alert Program: Design, Implementation, Intervention and Assessment 8:30 am - 4:30 pm



Optional Group Event


Churchill Downs Breakfast and Tour
Transportation & Breakfast included. Pre-Registration Required

$55.00 $55.00
Extra Copy of the Conference Proceedings
The Proceedings are published in a searchable PDF format on CD. This CD contains copies of the reviewed papers, as well as briefs from panels and tutorials


Purchased by November 5, 2014
Purchased after the conference



Included with your registration. Please note that the conference bags will include a Participant List of all conference attendees and a copy of the Proceedings of the 10th Annual National Symposium on Student Retention (CD), which includes peer reviewed papers from all paper presentations as well as briefs from panelists and tutorials. Your registration also includes the Welcome Reception on Monday and the Best Practices Luncheon on Wednesday.

A small portion of the room rate at the host hotel will be credited to the organization to help offset costs of the conference.

Cancellation/Refund Policy: Prepaid registrants who find they are unable to attend may send a delegate in their place without penalty. Refunds (less a 20% processing charge per registration) will be made on any prepaid registration for which we receive an advanced written cancellation by October 1, 2014.

No Show: Those who pre-registered and do not attend the conference without written notification of cancellation will be charged the full conference fee.


Conference Location and Transportation

Hyatt Regency Louisville –All conference activities will take place at the Hyatt. There are no longer rooms available in the conference hotel. However, we have made arrangements with two additional hotels, both within 3 blocks of the Hyatt.

Hyatt Regency Louisville exterior view

The Fairfield Inn & Suites-Louisville Downtown and the Springhill Suites-Louisville Downtown are both offering the special group rate of $149 per night to NSSR attendees. These rooms and special rate are available until Friday, October 17 OR until all group rooms are allocated, whichever comes first.

USE THIS LINK TO BOOK YOUR ROOM at the special conference rate for either hotel


Our conference hotel, the Hyatt Regency, is in the heart of Downtown Louisville, just steps from the city’s thriving business and entertainment districts. An urban haven in the heart of the city, it was the recipient of TripAdvisor’s 2013 Certificate of Excellence.

The Hyatt's signature restaurant, Sway, combines the flavors of Southern kitchens, American favorites and Sunday dinners with the freshest ingredients from local farms, dairies and butchers to create a memorable Farm to Fork experience. We are really looking forward to our Welcome Reception and Best Practices Luncheon.


Need help planning transportation?

We put together two interactive pdfs to help you get around: one includes all the information you need to get yourself and your colleagues from Louisville International Airport to your hotel Downtown, and one is a Map of Downtown, which includes locations and links for the conference and overflow hotels, area museums, restaurants, and other useful places in the vicinity. Once there, you may find that our central location, walkability, the indoor Skywalk, and the Free Downtown Trolley System via the Transit Authority of River City (TARC) may suit your needs.

Fourth Street Live! Louisville's premier dining, entertainment and retail destination, will be just outside your door. It's a short walk to Waterfront Park, the Museum District, which includes the Louisville Slugger Museum and Glassworks, and the Whiskey Row Historic District, but these and other attractions may also be reached on the Downtown Trolleys.

Louisville is known as Derby City, but it has much more to offer! It was recently named the "Top U.S. Travel Destination for 2013" by Lonely Planet, number 3 of the "8 Awesome Foodie Getaways Around the World" by Zagat, and one of the "Top 10 Tastiest Towns" by Southern Living. The city is a hotbed for vibrant visual and performing arts, as well as a historical charmer whose thriving central business district houses a Museum Row with 9 museums within a 4 block area.



Exhibitor and Sponsor Information



Are You Interested in Sponsoring or Exhibiting?

Exhibit opportunities are closed for the 10th annual National Symposium on Student Retention. If, however, you are interested in receiving information for the 2015 Symposium when it becomes available, please email Brittnee Morton at

Download Exhibitor and Sponsor Application (pdf)

Past Vendors


The Call for Proposals Process

The National Symposium on Student Retention is distinguished from other conferences in that all papers presented at the symposium have gone through a multiple stage review process before being published in the conference proceedings.

  • Authors submit abstracts on proposed papers, panels, posters, workshops and tutorials - Submission deadline: April 4, 2014
  • Abstracts are reviewed for appropriateness of topic, method of information dissemination, and proposed treatment of research - Notification: April 16, 2014
  • If abstract is accepted, authors are invited to submit paper for peer review - Submission deadline: June 6, 2014
  • Papers which score sufficiently high in this process are accepted for publication and presentation at conference - Notification: August 2014

We are no longer accepting new proposals.

All accepted papers are considered for the following annual prizes, which are awarded to the winners' institutions: Best Practices in Student Retention Award ($2,000); Institutional Research Leadership in Student Retention Award ($1,000); and the Director's Award ($750). In addition, poster submissions will be judged on-site for the Best Poster Award ($500). Please see this link for the press release on last year's winners.


Past Symposiums

New to our annual symposium? Check out some of our previous symposiums.

Here's a list of outstanding speakers from previous National Symposium of Student Retention events.


The Consortium for Student Retention Data Exchange at the University of Oklahoma is a consortium of two-year and four-year institutions dedicated to achieving the highest levels of student success through collaboratively sharing data, knowledge, and innovation.

CSRDE is a sponsored activity of the Center for Institutional Data Exchange and Analysis at

The University of Oklahoma Outreach
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