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New Initiative for Student Success Launches

Purdue University


Steps to Leaps is based on a set of five pillars to help students build lifelong habits in areas such as well-being, leadership and professional development, impact, networks and grit. The pillars are a broad representation of life skills that everybody can develop and refine for themselves.

Steps to Leaps offers goal setting, action planning, worksheets, short motivational videos and more for self-assessment or facilitator-led assessments to help students celebrate their strengths while learning paths to improvement.

Students may navigate the activity and assessment modules contained in a pillar on their own time; faculty and staff may suggest Steps to leaps to a student, hold group sessions or incorporate a pillar into a program already in place; or family members may suggest Steps to leaps to a student who may be struggling or need confidence building. The modules are created as complete lesson plans that guide a facilitator through each step.

Steps to Leaps was created to support Generation Z students, with the goal of helping them further develop skills to maximize their talents while minimizing the stress and pressure they put on themselves.

“We have approached our model with the understanding that every Purdue student has enormous capacity and talent and, through engaging in these topics, can grow even more,” said Dr. Beth McCuskey, vice provost for student life.

Student groups are integral to the program’s success. Residence hall advisors, student groups such as the Purdue Student Government, and Steps to Leaps interns are actively involved in implementing Steps to Leaps.

A multidisciplinary group of faculty are engaged in performing research related to Steps to Leaps pillars. The Research Collaborative seeks to establish evidence-based approaches to assessing and enhancing student well-being and resilience

Faculty and staff have additionally partnered with Steps to Leaps to implement pillars into curriculums as well as career and academic advising. Coursework, assessments of student success and the implementation of new technology to help students are all part of this work.

Learn more about Steps to Leaps by visiting

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