1.1 Briefly describe the program-level planning unit. What is the unit's purpose and function?
The Dusty Baker Center (DBC) is committed to providing student athletes with services that support their academic and intercollegiate sport goals while enrolled at American River College. In support of its mission the Dusty Baker Center coordinates the following holistic services for its student athletes:
Individualized academic support (tutoring, study skills, time management skills, peer mentoring)
Population the DBC serves:
Other than active student athletes, meaning that they are currently on the roster of one of ARC’s athletic teams, the DBC serves student athletes who are done with their 2 years of community college competition, but have not finished their academic requirements (degree, transfer, etc.) and require additional support from counselors and staff; also, a large amount of student athletes are “recruits” - incoming student athletes who were recruited by coaches, who may or may not end up joining a team at ARC. Although the amount of active students is around 400, the total number of students that the DBC serves every year is close to 500-600 student athletes. Specifically, this 500-600 number includes the following types of student athletes: New-to-college students, prospective student athletes aka recruits, continuing student athletes, grey shirts, red shirts, ineligible student athletes, and students who are no longer competing but still need additional semesters to complete their degree and/or transfer goals.
The DBC, consistent with American River College’s mission, is dedicated to a supportive, inclusive environment that inspires critical thinking, learning and achievement, as well as responsible participation in intercollegiate sports.
Assessment and Analysis
The program review process asks units to reflect on the progress they've made towards achieving the goals they identified in each of the Annual Unit Plans they submitted since their last Program Review.
Follow this link to access your previous EMP submissions. For assistance accessing the EMP system, please contact Mary Goodall at GoodalM@arc.losrios.edu or (916) 484-4535.
2.1 Consider the progress that has been made towards the unit's objectives over the last six years. Based on how the unit intended to measure progress towards achieving these objectives, did the unit's prior planned
action steps (last six years of annual unit plans) result in the intended effect or the goal(s) being achieved?
Six years ago, the Dusty Baker Center was closed due to various staffing and programming issues. The first step was to hire a new Athletic Counselor, then a full-time permanent Student Personnel Assistant (SPA). With this, the center reopened starting Fall 2015. The initial goals of the DBC upon reopening were:
Provide athletic (CCCAA) eligibility support to coaches and student athletes.
Provide athletic counseling to student athletes:
Have consistent clerical support for the athletic counselor(s) with scheduling appointments, reminder calls, follow ups.
Have SPA serve as liaison between coaching faculty and counseling faculty. The counselors’ schedules are packed with student contact and they do not have sufficient time to frequently communicate with coaches on behalf of the athletes.
Have a center that is open and available for student athletes that serves as a one-stop shop for all student athlete academic-related activities.
Improve student athlete academic success rates (measured by GPA and transfer rates)
In 2017-18, with support from the Vice President of Instruction, the DBC started a collaboration with the Learning Resource Center (LRC) to provide peer mentorship and/or tutoring for student athletes. This objective proved to be a long-term process, the results to which were not immediately visible. In year 3 of the peer mentorship program, here is where we are today:
LRC Tutoring Coordinator assigned to the LRC and the Dusty Baker Center mentoring program.
Instructional Assistants, Clerks, and Student Assistants who serve as peer mentors and tutors for student athletes.
Study Hall (supervised study hour[s]) available for most sports.
6 years ago, starting out with just 3 team members: full time athletic counselor, adjunct athletic counselor, and full time SPA, the DBC started providing services and improving the success of student athletes. In the very first semester of working together, the ARC Football team reached their all-time high team GPA at 2.66 (the highest it’s been since 2011 was 2.3).
During the 2019-20 academic year, we have met and exceeded our goals. We have also created many new goals throughout the 6 years and have been working toward them. Here is where we stand as a center today:
1 full time and 2 adjunct athletic counselors who are leaders in their field in the state of CA and have a pulse on any new pertinent changes to student athlete academic requirements at the Community College and 4-year levels.
Funding to have temp clerk coverage for the front desk to assist students in checking in for appointments, scheduling appointments (counseling and peer mentorship appointments), quick questions, answer phone calls, provide assistance with technical issues with Canvas, Athletic Training Paperwork, and more.
LRC Tutoring Coordinator assigned to the DBC mentoring program.
7 Peer mentors who
Supervise Study Hall
Meet with students one-on-one for tutoring
Meet with students one-on-one for peer mentorship
Assist students with registration based on ed plans made with counselors
Serve as back-up for front desk duties/phone
Student Personnel Assistant
Coordinate operations of the DBC (hire and supervise all temporary staff and student assistants, create office schedules, etc.)
In collaboration with Athletic Counselor, LRC Tutoring Coordinator, and appropriate deans, advocate for resources for student athletes.
Coordinate CCCAA eligibility along with the Athletic Directors and Admissions department.
Track success of student athletes and communicate it to coaches, athletic counselors, LRC, and the campus.
Serve as public information officer for Athletics.
Photographer student assistant/Athletics Mascot (funding through Federal Work Study and right now not sustainable)
In light of the COVID-19 Pandemic, the DBC budget was significantly reduced. During the 2020-21 academic year, our staffing has been reduced to the following:
Athletic Counseling and SPA - no changes
Only enough funding for 2 temp classified staff members who now split their time between answering phone calls and peer mentoring. The DBC is currently past capacity to be able to handle all the needs of our student athletes, especially as student athletes deal with adjusting to the online environment, technology issues, mental health issues connected to not being able to gather with their teams (which was their safe haven before), etc.
The following data sets may be useful in promoting and informing departmental dialogue, planning, decision making, and resource allocation.
Email Standard Data Set link
In addition to reflecting on the metrics shown above, it may prove useful to analyze other program-level data to assess the effectiveness of your unit.
For instructional units, ARC’s Data on demand system can be used to provide program and course
level information regarding equitable outcomes, such as program access or enrollment, successful course completion, and degree or certificate achievement
(up to 30+ demographic or course filters are available).
You might also consider pursuing other lines of inquiry appropriate to your unit type (instructional, student support, institutional/administrative support).
Refer to the Program Review Inquiry Guide for specific lines of inquiry.
2.2 What were the findings? Please identify program strengths, opportunities, challenges, equity gaps, influencing
factors (e.g., program environment), data limitations, areas for further research, and/or other items of interest.
data limitations, areas for further research, and/or other items of interest.
The DBC SPA keeps track of all data for student athletes. Here are the findings:
GPA: During the last 5 years, all athletic teams have reached their all-time high team Grade Point Average. The first to change was Football, through implementation of study hall (first supervised by assistant coaches, now by DBC peer mentors). Other sports followed throughout the years. The last two sports that have been an area of concern (Men’s and Women’s Soccer) started study hall in the fall 2019 semester and both earned their all-time high team GPA’s.
Graduation and Transfer Rates: At this point, this data is not fully quantifiable. Each athletic team keeps their own records of students who have transferred to complete and/or study at the 4 year level. From teams that were lower-performing in 2015, there has been significant improvement. One example would be men’s basketball: in 2017-18, there were two student athletes who transferred to a 4-year form a team of 15. transferred to compete and/or study at the next level.
Every year, the SPA and full-time athletic counselor attend Commencement Ceremony. They highlight the names of the student athletes on the program. Each year, there are a lot more highlights.
By providing the academic support necessary for student athletes, their coaches are able to focus more on the athletic success of the teams. In the last 5 years, there have been many first for our teams when it comes to athletic achievements: Men’s Water Polo won their first ever Big 8 Championship (2018), Women’s Volleyball won their first ever State Championship (2018), Football competed for the State Title (2016) in 40+ years, and many more. The high-performing athletic teams also happened to have high academic performance - and that is not by chance. This is through the hard work and collaboration of the LRC, DBC, Counseling, and Athletics.
Usage of the DBC: Starting Fall 2015, when the DBC reopened, it hasn’t In 2018-19, all 10 sophomores had offers to compete and all of them seen a slow day other than Fridays in the summer. Any day of the Fall and Spring semester, if someone were to walk in to the DBC, they would see that all 6 computers are being used, students seeing counselors, students asking questions at the front desk, meeting with peer mentors, or meeting with SPA. With serving a population of 600, our primary goal was to help as many as we can. Now, our goal and standard has been not to let anyone “slip through the cracks”. We have been reaching that goal, one student athlete and one team at a time. Here is a snapshot of before the DBC was fully-functioning to once it started operating at its best. This data does not include the peer mentorship program.
Number of both permanent and temporary staff available to help
Collaboration with campus
Learning Resource Center for study hall
Achieve Center used for workshops
Financial Aid representative in the DBC once a week
Admissions - assigned evaluators who help with forms for student athletes
Athletic Counselors located in the DBC
Consistency of services
Funding is not sustainable. In 2019-20 the DBC is under the Learning Resource Center. In the past, it reported to Athletics and will probably go back to Athletics at some point. Whatever the reporting structure, there is no consistent funding flow. As of right now, we have funding for temporary staff and students this year, but there is no agreement that this funding will continue next year. Especially the peer mentorship program, there is no guarantee that this program will be available to student athletes next year.
Student athletes are a disproportionately impacted population. Many fall under the categories of first generation college students, low income, single income/parent homes, teen parents, and are employed part-time to name a few. Just like other community college students, they have families, jobs, food and housing insecurities; on top of all that, they participate in a sport that requires anywhere between 2-6 hours of practice every day, with travel for competition on the weekends. Many make assumptions that student athletes are a privileged group. However, at the community college level in California, there are no privileges for community college student athletes other than priority registration. Other than that, they do not get meal money, nor scholarships, nor other benefits.
Many student athletes come from disproportionately impacted backgrounds. Athletics is the only path that they know and the only path available to them to pursue higher education. For example, looking at the data for the ARC campus African American males success rate, a large portion of the success should be attributed to African American male student athletes specifically. African American male student athletes on the ARC Football team, the ARC Track & Field team and other teams, have done exceptionally well and many have transferred to compete and/or study at the 4-year level.
The DBC has a strong team who work together really well. The athletic coaching faculty, counseling faculty, LRC Tutoring Coordinator, SPA, and temporary staff are part of a big operation with everyone doing their best at helping the student athletes succeed. The team is really our biggest strength. Each employee educator is very important to the success of the Dusty Baker Center and to continue and improve on the success of the DBC, all current staff (roles) are crucial to continue.
Data limitations/Areas for Future Research:
Currently, the only data tracking that is done, is done manually by the DBC SPA as there is no centralized location to house information. Nor is there an automated system that is designed to capture the data that we need as a program, campus or district. The data on demand system does not have the capability to track student athletes. Therefore, there are major areas where the results of our work are qualitative vs. quantitative.
4.1 Identify/define one or more program-level objectives which enhance the unit's effectiveness. What does your unit intend to do to work towards its ideal future? How will success be measured?
Improve the early alert communication between peer mentors and student athletes.
Currently, athletes submit grade checks and peer mentors reach out to those who have C’s or below on grade checks. Right now, this follow up is optional. Further work with coaching faculty will help enforce the requirement of students who are in need of academic help to meet with a peer coach regularly.
The DBC plans on reaching this goal by continuing to build on the work that has been developing over the last two years of the mentorship program. Growing the program has been a challenging task when it comes to funding, function, disbursement of responsibilities, promotion to students, and availability of space. Now, the program reached its growth quantitatively and will be able to further focus on quality in the next academic year.
Success will be measured based on grade check grades vs. final grades for the class, utilization of peer mentorship services, and student athlete GPA and graduation/transfer rates.
In order for this to happen, the DBC must receive the same funding as has been advocated for the 2019-2020 academic year.
4.2 How will the unit's intended enhancements support ARC's commitment to social justice and equity?
By improving the early alert academic help for student athletes through peer mentorship, the DBC will be able to ensure that each student athlete can have the services they need in order to succeed academically and be able to have opportunities to study and/or compete at the next level (if they choose to).
The DBC is a community of employee educators and student athletes. Having the crucial staffing that we were finally able to have during the 2019-2020 year has provided a sense of community, without that sense of community relying solely on one or two staff/faculty members. We are able to tag-team and help from various angles to ensure student athlete success in the classroom, in their sport, and in their life.
Losing most of that funding during the 2020-21 academic year resulted in employees working past their capacity and not being able to address the needs of all of our students.