MAPS offers a variety of advising, coaching, and mentoring options
The Compass Advising program provides additional guidance and support for first-generation,
low income, or independent students in addition to any ASP participants. Students
accepted to Compass are matched with an Academic Advisor from the MAPS office who
serves as an advisor, coach, mentor, and guide throughout their academic journey at
WCU. Students meet with their advisor bi-monthly for individualized consultations
on academic, social, personal, and career goals, as needed.
For more information about Compass eligibility, see our eligibility guidelines.
To apply, visit the the Compass program page.
All Compass-eligible students can also meet with graduate students in the MAPS office
for coaching on a variety of academic skills including study skills, time management,
test prep strategies, and personal organization. Based on the student's need, coaching
can be scheduled as a single session or reccuring throughout the semester. For more
info on coaching or to schedule an appointment, please contact MAPS at 828-227-7127
or firstname.lastname@example.org. Students may also meet with a success coach through our Drop-In Services without
making an appointment.
MAPS Mentor Program
The MAPS Mentor Program connects first-generation and independent students to a peer
mentor who will help them navigate their first year at WCU. Peer mentors provide guidance
related to academics, campus services, programs, and events. Students and mentors
have regular contact over the course of their first semester (and beyond, if the student
wishes). The mentor will also encourage the student's attendance and participation
in First Gen/Independent activities and may attend some events with the student. Participating
in a mentor relationship helps students to discover their strengths, develop their
character, determine their focus, and discern their blind spots! For more information,
contact MAPS at 828-227-7127 or email@example.com.
Sign-up for a MAPS Mentor!
MAPS provides Drop-In Services to offer support for all Compass-eligible students,
whether or not they are current participants in any of our programs. These Drop-In
Services allow students to receive personalized support and referrals from MAPS staff
as well as academic advising or coaching. Students can drop-in during regular office
hours (Mon. - Fri. 8 am to 5 pm). If an advisor or coach is not immediately available,
the student can schedule an appointment.
Academic Success Program
Western Carolina University offers the Academic Success Program (ASP) as an opportunity
for students to begin their college experience early and to prepare them for success
in college and beyond. This program is designed to provide a full year of support
to facilitate a successful first-year experience and to help student develop skills
to excel in their college career. It helps motivate them to set higher goals in school
and in life and holds them accountable for demonstrating attitudes and behaviors that
coincide with reaching their goals.
ASP is a conditional admission program in that students who are invited to participate MUST successfully complete a 5-week
intensive summer program. Students are enrolled in to seven credit hours of courses,
all of which count toward graduation, and participate academic, social, and transitional
support events, workshops, and seminars. The highly structured learning community
environment is designed to guide and support students as they prepare for and transition
in to their first college experience.
For more information about the Academic Success Program, please visit the ASP website or contact our office at 828.227.7127 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
So now that you've been accepted to WCU, why wait for fall? Get a head start on your
college career by participating in Catamount Gap! Students who qualify for financial
aid can use their previous-year aid package during the summer and complete 6-8 credit
hours over 5 weeks. Bridge the gap from high school to college life in an active investigation
of how your academic, social, and personal success development are intertwined. The
program runs roughly from the end of June through July and provides students the opportunity
to develop a network of faculty, staff, high-achieving upperclassmen, and peers in
an inclusive learning community environment.
To learn more, visit CatamountGap.wcu.edu.
Want to take courses overseas before your freshman year? Look into Catamount Gap Abroad!
In order to help our students develop community, the MAPS office supports two student
The Resilient Independent Student Association
The Resilient Independent Student Association (RISA) was established to serve and
to support students that are former foster youth, former orphans, emancipated youth,
homeless youth, as well as other non-traditional students. RISA strives to support,
encourage, and uplift members of our organization and our community in order to foster
an attitude of success and achievement, as well as to involve students in outreach,
awareness, and advocacy. For more information, visit the RISA web page or contact email@example.com.
The First Gen Club
The First Gen Club helps build a community of students and supports the transition
of first-generation students to WCU. The club hosts regular meetings, social events,
and educational activities throughout the year in order to connect students with each
other and provide information about resources and topics of interest. All first-generation
students are welcome to join and attend! For more information, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Family/Student Supporter Information
We are committed to supporting our students as holistically as possible, including
support via their family or support structure outside of the university! We keep a
Family page updated with information for our students, with relevant information, tips, and resources!
We also distribute a monthly newsletter with helpful tips about what your student
might be experiencing this month. Please email email@example.com in order to be added to our mailing list!
WCU has partnered with Baptist Children's Home to open HOMEBASE! HOMEBASE is used for RISA programming as well as other student outreach services.
It is located to the right of the Cullowhee Baptist Church parking lot across from
Tuck's. Please visit https://www.homebasewcu.org/ for more information!