Preliminary impact of DegreePlus: An institutional program to provide transferable skill development through extracurricular activities
DegreePlus is a recently developed program at Western Carolina University (WCU) that aims to develop transferable skills, including professionalism, cultural responsiveness, leadership and teamwork, in students via their participation in extracurricular activities. A mixed-methods study that included focus groups and a survey was used to identify the preliminary impacts of the program. Researchers found that students view the program as a supportive initiative to help them prepare for their future and meet their career goals. Students also perceive that they are learning the targeted skills and are able to apply them to a limited extent. Finally, students view the program as a means of connecting to their university community. We anticipate that student participation in this program may assist with other institutional goals, such as retention and student success, as many of the impacts from the program align with principles that support these objectives.