Tag Archives: CASA

Get ‘Er Done – Tricks of the Trade for Getting Through the End of the Semester

Study materials

Are you prepared for finals season? (Photo by Jesse Gill on Instagram)

Feeling, stressed, overworked, and/or drained? You’re not alone, and students and faculty have some helpful tips for utilizing USF’s resources (and your own) to make that light at the end of the tunnel seem a little less far away.

Whether you’re worrying about registration, graduation, changing your major, or just falling behind, this is your inside guide to getting on track.

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Kappa Alpha Theta to host “Theta Touchdown” this Friday


Do you love football? Do you wish USF had a football team? Well then, you should join the women of Kappa Alpha Theta for their second annual philanthropic flag football tournament, Theta Touchdown! at Welsh Field on Friday, April 5th at 2:30-6pm.

The women will be hosting a flag football tournament to raise money for two charities: CASA, which helps foster children find security needed to reach full potential, and Theta Foundation, which provides financial hardship grants for Kappa Alpha Theta members.

There will be free drinks provided by Red Bull and Hi-ball energy, as well as free energy bars courtesy of KIND bars. If that does not motivate you enough, there will also be a food truck serving mouth-watering burgers and more! Winners of the tournament will get a trophy and their own personalized medals, and there might be a surprise performance…you will just have to come and see!

So if you are interested, check out the Kappa Alpha Theta Facebook event page or contact Kappa Alpha Theta’s Service and Philanthropy Director Elsa Medeiros at sfthetaservice@gmail.com. Gather seven of your friends or more and come out to support a great cause! $7 per person, $49 per team.


Ki Alpha Thetta presents:


Friday, April 5th 2:30-6p.m.

Welsh Field

Cost: $7 per individual, $49 per team

What is CASA? A Guide to USF’s Center for Academic and Student Acheivement

College can be a scary and stressful change for students. Moving away from home, making new friends, and adjusting to the rigorous academics all at once can be overwhelming. However, USF has acknowledged that students need personal support, equally as much as academic support, and has created CASA to provide a home away from home.

CASA, the Center for Academic and Student Achievement, consists of a team of 12 university advisers. In addition, CASA has an administrative team helping run the program. CASA provides support programs such as New Student Orientation, The Back-on-Track Program for students on academic probation, and the Student Success Workshops. CASA’s vision started back in 2011 when Provost Jennifer Turpin wanted to centralize all the support services for students.

So what differentiates CASA from your academic advisors?

Laleh Shahideh, associate vice provost and dean of Student Academic Services, said that the center’s goals is to provide a holistic approach to student support. Faculty advisors are assigned to students specifically by major, whereas university advisors are specialized to provide not only academic, mental and personal support beyond helping students select classes.

“The difference is that when a student goes to see their faculty academic advisor, they are extremely knowledgeable in the discipline such as academics or careers in the student’s major,” she said. “But when you come and see a CASA staff member, for example, if a student wants to drop a class, we try to get to the bottom of the issue and see what the students really need.”


Shahideh said that CASA has two objectives and that is to improve retention and increase four-year graduation rates. According to Shahideh, since CASA started in fall of 2012, retention rates have already increased to 90 percent.

“[Students] may have financial issues, or family issues, or a learning disability that they do not know about. Those are the things then that we try to address or if we can’t then we connect them with proper referrals on campus such as the counseling center or student disability services,” Shahideh said.

Anna Cross, one of the university advisers and director of Communication and Student Outreach, said she was intrigued by the concept and the merging of multiple resources and services across campus into one space.

Cross used to work in admissions but said one of her favorite aspects of her job is interacting with students and getting know them. “Now I have the chance to see them start off at square one as a freshman, and work with them as they develop into passionate, brilliant, and mature young men and women during their four years here,” she said.

Students at USF also find CASA to be beneficial to them. “Working with CASA was really easy. I just walked in and they processed my paper work, and they said it would be finished by the end of today,” said freshman Andy Woodhull. The undeclared student took the wrong rhetoric class last semester and visited CASA for more information on taking an advanced course. “ I thought it was going to take 10-15 minutes, but it really took only about two seconds.”

To learn more about CASA visit the center on the UC 3rd Floor or visit www.usfca.edu/casa

Senate Briefings

C.A.S.A. Seeks to Improve Advising Assistance
Associate Vice Provost and Dean of Academic Student Services Laleh Shahideh gave an informative presentation on the recently formed Center for Academic and Student Achievement (C.A.S.A.) program. C.A.S.A., which was created last summer, aims to provide academic support in all areas to USF undergraduate students and graduate students in the College of Arts and Sciences. The program is expected to have its office set up in the UC building later this year.
C.A.S.A. proposes to assign each USF student with a faculty advisor to give academic support. It will also assign a student staff member from the academic colleges, schools and Student Life department as a university advisor to assist students.
Shahideh stressed the importance of student-faculty interaction, which C.A.S.A. hopes to increase at USF.
The program is expected to be particularly helpful when there are scheduling conflicts between professors and students. It is also anticipated the program will ensure students have an advisor in circumstances where faculty advisors have to leave on sabbatical.
With the implementation of C.A.S.A., students will no longer have to contact multiple offices for advising assistance. Advisors will no longer be assigned by major, which will open opportunities for all students to receive help.
C.A.S.A. aims to eliminate the stress associated with registration by creating more resources for students to seek academic and personal support.

State Government Poses Threat to Recipients of Cal GrantsCal Grant financial aid students may be at risk due to the state government’s proposal to reduce Cal Grant funds. Governor Brown intends to reduce California’s deficit by increasing taxes but if voters don’t approve, his administration will make cuts to bussing for K-12, programs for the disabled and higher education. For recipients of the Cal Grant at private universities this means aid would be reduced by more than forty percent.

Currently, 943 USF students would be affected by the cuts to the Cal Grant program.
The Association of Independent California Colleges and Universities (AICCU) urges all students to send in stories of their personal need for aid. March 7 is the AICCU day of action, in which students benefiting from Cal Grants can share their thoughts on the issue with Sacramento government officials.

Visit aiccu.edu for more information about proposed cuts to Cal Grant.