Action Item 1.1

Educational and professional development opportunities for the offices of Enrollment Management and Student Life

Given the changing demographics of students nationally, the shortfall that is anticipated in the next five years in the Midwest region, and the continued need to recruit students from larger, more diverse geographical regions of the country, it is imperative that our Enrollment Management and Student Life teams be strong leaders in the admissions and support of our students and their families.

Accepted Action Steps:

Responsible Parties: Enrollment Management and Student Life
Implementation Chair: Bart Harvey, Executive Director of Undergraduate Admission
CIVC Attachè: Janneal Gifford, Academic Advisor CONHP

Twenty-Five Admissions and Financial Aid Advisors Attended a DEI Training Workshop

This fall (2022), the Enrollment and Financial Aid staff attended a workshop focusing on the best practices to recruit student from historically underrepresented backgrounds. They learned techniques to effectively communicate with students whose parents did not attend college. The Vice President of Enrollment and Marketing commented that the staff thought the workshop was highly beneficial and prompted discussions on how to improve recruitment processes and materials for marginalized populations.
The Admissions Staff is currently on the road and they will attend an Implicit Bias workshop when they return.

Accepted Action Steps:

1.1.a – Implement intercultural competency educational development series1.1.b – Continue participation in the short- and long-term review process for the discontinuance of standardized testing

Responsible Parties: Committee on Academic and Professional Standards and Enrollment Management
Implementation Chair: Bart Harvey, Executive Director of Undergraduate Admission
CIVC Attachè: Anne Raich, Associate Professor, Civil Engineering

Discontinuation of Standardized Testing

Valparaiso discontinued standardized tests as a prerequisite for admission as a measure to encourage student enrollment during 2020-2022 as a response to the coronavirus pandemic. This decision is still in place for the 2022-2023 academic year.

Action Steps for Strategic Discussion and Potential Implementation:

Responsible Parties: Enrollment Management and CIVC/Task Force
Implementation Chair: Angela Vidal-Rodriguez, Assistant Vice President for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion


Financial Aid 101Tuesday, April 12, 2022 at 6:00pm

  • Sponsored by Action Agenda (catering) and Office of Enrollment and Retention (scholarships)
  • Presentation given by Ann Weitgenant, Associate Director of Financial Aid
  • Attended by 85 students
  • All attendees will be receiving a $100 book scholarship

Social Justice: Financial Literacy (CORE-115 approved event): Monday, March 28, 2022 at 4:30pm

  • Sponsored by Action Agenda (snacks) and Office of Enrollment and Retention (scholarship)
  • Presentation given by our partners from United Way
  • Attended by 16 students
  • 1 winner from the $200 book scholarship drawing

Responsible Parties: Executive Director for Retention & Student Success in collaboration with various campus constituencies
Implementation Chair: Angela Vidal-Rodriguez, Assistant Vice President for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

Launched the Hardship Fund

In Spring 2022, The Hardship Fund was established to provide low-income students with financial assistance when faced with an unexpected and urgent situation that is distracting them from their academic endeavors at Valpo. This fund is specifically for costs that are non-academic, but that still impact a student’s experience at Valpo. Funding is designed to provide aid to eligible students who are struggling with a personal crisis or an emergency situation. The fund received 150 applications and approved thirteen students with $3635 as emergency aid. The Hardship Fund was established by Jennifer Easthope, Lezlie Ontiveros and Christina Hearne.

Private Funding Contributes to the Hardship Fund

You can donate here! sid=1347&gid=1&pgid=3273

The OMP Office, Access and Accommodations Resource Center and the Retention Office collaborated with Advancement to launch crowd funding efforts to increase the Hardship Fund budget.

  • The project raised $4,419 from 42 donors (26 unique donor households)
  • 23 alumni gave $3,047.50
  • 13 university employees supported the Hardship Fund, with gifts totalling $1,482.75
  • The Hardship Fund attracted six donors who had never made a gift to the University. Four graduates of the last decade (what we call “GOLD alumni”) made a gift to the Hardship Fund, one of whom made her first gift to Valpo.
  • The Hardship Fund received 22 gifts ($300) on Day of Giving 2022.
  • Finally, The Hardship Fund inspired one donor to pledge $500 annually, with a pending employer match for an additional $500.
The Hardship Fund Continues to Save the Day

In Fall 2022 the Hardship Fund is under new leadership! OMP Assistant Director Sonia Morales and  Assistant Director of Student Life for Student Conduct and Support  Noelle Pease were added to the team. With the guidance of Christina Hearne (Head of Access and Accommodations Resource Center), the Hardship Fund has already helped nine students this semester with a budget of $3480.