Spurring Success

Three undergraduate business students from varied backgrounds share their stories of perseverance. An influx of student success services at The School of Business has helped increase freshman retention by nearly 8% over the last two years, and hardship fund recipients are retained or graduated well above the general student population at a rate of 88%.

  • Zac McKinster is a Navy veteran and new father. He barely graduated high school and failed math, and now he's studying finance and quantitative economics. His instructors make time for him outside of the classroom and allow him to challenge the status quo. Zac is a member of the Dean's Future Leaders Group
  • Alpia Ainiwaer is a supply chain student from China. After facing financial hardship, she joined Atmos, a program that supports business students from diverse and underserved backgrounds. Alpia was able to secure tuition assistance through Atmos in order to stay on her path toward graduation.
  • Luis Patron Diaz, a first-generation college student, graduated in spring 2019 with a degree in finance. Originally from Mexico, his single mother worked three or four jobs to support her children. Luis was a hardship fund recipient, Atmos student and member of the Dean's Future Leaders Group. He plans to attend law school and is considering a career in politics.