ISER’s Dayna DeFeo, director of the Center for Alaska Education Policy Research (CAEPR), and Research Associates Jessica Passini and Trang Tran provided current research to educators, administrators and policymakers on student transitions from high school to post-secondary education, including college and technical schools.

Dayna DeFeo, Trang Tran, and Jessica PassiniResearchers shared preliminary findings from a study showing students surveyed were confident that they were going to do well, and did not want help from available campus resources. Students’ perceptions, however, did not always align with their performance, with many dropping out of post-secondary education before earning their degree. “At the heart of this is how do we serve students who don’t want or think they need support,” said CAEPR Director DeFeo.

In a second presentation, ISER’s education researchers shared their preliminary findings of what helps rural students transition to post-secondary education. This includes their attitudes and the support they receive at home, in high school, and from the post-secondary institutions where they are enrolled.

“This research shows where we can make a critical difference when working with rural youth,” DeFeo said.

The presentations were made at the annual Alaska Career & Technical Education Professional Development Conference in Anchorage.

“We are connecting the work we do in education research to the state’s workforce development priorities,” DeFeo said.

Research findings presented are preliminary and will be the subject of future publications.