Student success spotlight: Kara McCluskey

Kara McCluskey

This week’s Student Success and Persistence highlight comes from Kara McCluskey, associate educator for the Department of Applied Engineering in the College of Engineering.

  • What role do you think faculty/staff play in a student’s success and persistence?
    “As a faculty member, I believe we can play a big role in student’s success and persistence. We need to set a high expectation level but make sure students know we believe in them and know they can succeed. By listening to students and getting to know what they are passionate about, we can guide them to a career path they will succeed in. We also help students by letting them know it’s ok to stumble along the way in their academic journey, and we are here to help them get back on track.”
  • What is one small thing any faculty/staff member can do to make a student’s day or let them know they’re cared for?
    “Getting to know students and letting them know you care is the single most important thing a faculty member can do. I ask students how their days are going as they walk into my class. Giving them encouragement and empathy when their days aren’t going well and celebrating the positives on good days is a small way of letting them know I care about them. It makes my day better when students come early to class just to share something about their day with me.”
  • How do you promote student success through your campus duties?
    “Faculty advising is a time when I get to know students and their career goals. Before teaching, I worked in industry, so I share my perspectives with students and give them advice when they are finding their ‘dream’ job.”

Do you know of a faculty or staff member who promotes student success, or a student who has been helped by a faculty or staff member, that should be highlighted in WSU Today? Email your ideas to Caelin Bragg, newsletter editor with the Office of Strategic Communications, at