Student success spotlight: Pamela O’Neal

This week’s Student Success and Persistence spotlight comes from Pamela O’Neal, associate director of student engagement in the Office of Online and Adult Learning.

  • What role do you think faculty/staff play in a student’s success and persistence?
    “The potential staff and faculty have in a student’s success and persistence is immeasurable. I’ve heard students time and time again say to not only myself but to other staff and faculty, ‘I couldn’t have done it (meaning graduate) without you.’ Students need to know someone is not only there for them, but also that someone believes and is rooting for them the entire time they are at WSU.”
  • 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?
    “Ask them how their day is going and sincerely listen. Sometimes you’ll have advice or an answer for them, but sometimes they just want to know someone is really listening to them and not just hearing the words they are saying.”
  • How do you promote student success through your campus duties?
    “In 2020, our office held the Inaugural Adult Learner Of The Year (ALOTY) Awards Celebration. Now in its fifth year, ALOTY Awards Celebration seeks to highlight adult learners who go above and beyond in the classroom and in the community as well.
    We also recognize a campus partner (a person or organization) at WSU who we work with and a community partner (a person or organization) we work with and highlight them and thank them for their work.
    We also highlight students throughout the year on our Shocker Proud website and during Online and Adult Learner Week at WSU.”

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