14Jul 2015
Saving One Student

Growing up I always had the incredible support from my family. My mom and dad never spared the praise whenever I would do something—no matter how small. We went on tons of family vacations and spent time together: on the lake, camping, at Six Flags, or even just playing Frisbee across the street at the park. It was always a fun adventure and my little sister and I never lacked support. We were always encouraged to do well and succeed. We were promised that, no matter what, we would have their undying love. My family life seemed like a perfect little bubble until my parents divorced. Continue reading

08Jul 2015

Today, we would like to extend a special spotlight to Abilene Christian University. If you’ve had the pleasure of reading our story then you know that Pharos Resources had its humble beginning within this amazing University. Thanks to the incredible collaborative efforts of these outstanding professionals, the concept of Early Alert was revolutionized.


And it all started with a simple idea:

“Retention is about equipping students and creating opportunities to engage in communities to keep them here.”


About seven years ago a group of faculty and staff began to realize that they needed a better way to identify students who were at-risk of not returning. Relying on midterm grades wasn’t enough; it’s far too late in the semester to make a significant turnaround. And even if the midterm grade doesn’t reflect it, the student may still be struggling. So a team was formed and they developed a system that could help identify and monitor students through various campus relationships.

Relying on midterm grades wasn’t enough; it’s far too late in the semester to make a significant turnaround.

Abilene Christian University recognized that using the close ties within the network of a small university they could care for students in a whole new way. And even after their system, S.O.S. (Support our Students), had been implemented the University continued both practice and intervention development. Continue reading

07Jul 2015

The mission of higher education should be more than simply delivering a lecture or providing academic counseling, then moving on to the next semester. While that might be your primary job description as a college professional, those who really make a difference believe that a great education is not just about education, it’s about care, compassion, and having a genuine stake in your students’ success.

Eight years ago two educators at Abilene Christian University started working together to make providing support to students a meaningful campus-wide initiative. Continue reading

04Jun 2015

At Pharos, we talk a lot about student care and what a university should provide. We go to tremendous lengths to work with you (our client) to see what your vision is for your campus and how we can adapt our services to fit your needs; it’s all about you and what you provide for your student.

As a full-time student and part-time intern with Pharos, I see how easy it is to get lost in your plans and forget that it all boils down to one question:

What do your students need?


So today I was asked to write about what a university owes its students from the perspective of a student, and I’m happy to oblige. I truly hope it helps your university and classrooms to understand what students really look for in your school. Continue reading

03Jun 2015

Part of what makes student retention so difficult is that it’s a different process for each school. No two colleges are alike, so it’s up to each university to work to custom-fit innovations for their school. Today, we would like to give recognition to Wesley College for their amazing (and continuing) efforts in proactively improving their student care systems! Continue reading

29May 2015

As a die-hard procrastinator, I am determined to give this life strategy the credit it deserves…
starting tomorrow.

Preaching to students about the dangers of procrastination has never worked for me — mostly because I embrace my own natural tendency to procrastinate. I decided long ago that sharing my strategies for taming and optimizing this habit is a much better use of my time. So instead of trying to convince students to start their work earlier, here are the five things I tell them that have helped me harness and optimize my gift of procrastination. Continue reading