Strong Start To Finish

University System of Georgia

Through a competitive grant application process, the University System of Georgia was selected to serve as one of  Strong Start to Finish's scaling sites that serve as exemplars for scaling evidence-based practices.

Spearheaded by the system office and engaging all 26 USG institutions, USG-SSTF aims to significantly increase the number of students completing high-quality degrees, certificates, and licenses with labor market value while eliminating racial, ethnic and income gaps in achievement.



Hear From the Scaling Sites

Priority Action Areas

USG-SSTF's action areas are integrated into their systemwide Momentum Year model. Each institution will create a coherent strategy so that during their first academic year, each incoming student will have the opportunity to:

  • Make a purposeful program choice.
  • Attempt as much of the first 30 hours of a clear degree pathway as possible.
  • Enroll in at least 3 courses within their area of focus.
  • Create a productive academic mindset.
  • Successfully complete both a freshman English and math class.

Strategies at Scale

Through the support and professional networks of Strong Start to Finish, USG-SSTF will scale the following reforms:

  • Host annual Momentum Summits for presidents, provosts, vice presidents for student affairs and finance officers to plan and implement the campus Momentum Year framework.
  • Change campus policies to bring the co-requisite model to scale at all campuses and provide faculty training as necessary. 
  • Conduct ongoing research, prototype interventions and train faculty, administrators and staff on how academic mindset can influence first-year student success outcomes.
  • Transform new student advising and onboarding through policy changes, implementation of system-wide BANNER data modification and three advising professional development summits.
  • Redesign critical math and English gateway courses and provide professional development to faculty and administrators at all campuses.
  • Revise statewide math transfer pathways and develop statistics pathways.
  • Create a customizable intake system that requires all institutions to provide pre-enrollment advising to help students identify appropriate courses and learning support resources.
  • Develop and utilize program maps to maximize appropriate course selection and limit unnecessary credit accumulation.

Project Leadership and Campus Involvement

USG-SSTF is managed by leadership from the Division of Academic Affairs and Division of Strategy and Fiscal Affairs. The team coordinates campus leadership, a partner council and Regents Advisory Committees to lead USG-SSTF.

The first-year experience initiatives, above, are crafted statewide as a comprehensive approach, with the system office lead and participation of all 28 institutions. These institutions collectively serve more than 44,000 first-year students annually.

  • Abraham Baldwin
  • Agricultural College
  • Albany State University
  • Atlanta Metropolitan State College
  • Augusta University
  • Clayton State University
  • College of Coastal Georgia
  • Columbus State University
  • Dalton State College
  • East Georgia State College
  • Fort Valley State University
  • Georgia College & State University
  • Georgia Gwinnett College
  • Georgia Highlands College
  • Georgia Institute of Technology
  • Georgia Southern University
  • Georgia Southwestern State University
  • Georgia State University
  • Gordon State College
  • Kennesaw State University
  • Middle Georgia State University
  • Savannah State University 
  • South Georgia State College
  • University of Georgia
  • University of North Georgia
  • University of West Georgia
  • Valdosta State University