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Retention Initiatives


STRIDE participants group
Past STRIDE participants gather at the Spencer-Weinstein Center for Community and Justice.

Students Together Reaching for Individual Development and Education (STRIDE) is a peer leadership program designed to support first-year students of color with their adjustment to Davidson College. STRIDE offers academic, cultural, and social support as well as vital but sometimes "invisible" information about successfully navigating academic and social spaces and resources on campus. The program creates safe spaces for students from historically underrepresented backgrounds to talk openly with peers, peer mentors, staff members, and faculty members about the material and emotional challenges they face or may face as cultural and/or stigmatized minority groups.

Pre-Orientation is a critical part of the STRIDE initiative. It takes place for three days just before the college's general orientation and pairs students with upperclass peer leaders. As a result, STRIDE participants begin the semester with an established peer group and a cultural foundation for academic and social success. The program is offered at no additional costs to students. Students who register for STRIDE move into their assigned residence hall at the start of pre-college enrichment and family members are welcome to attend a private question and answer session with senior administrators, the STRIDE director, and affiliated professors.

Peer leaders assist in the facilitation of the pre-orientation program and serve as a resource for first year students throughout the academic year. Leaders are paired with first-year students using the registration information that STRIDE applicants provide.

The fall semester begins with a weekly seminar in September to build academic success skills among students. Between October and April, monthly gatherings are provided to help students build community, explore Charlotte and dialogue on current issues impacting first-year students. The spring semester includes a mid-year event to reunite the group and check in about successes and setbacks. The year concludes with an informal recognition event to celebrate the completion of the first-year and to thank peer leaders for their efforts.

For more information, please email Assistant Dean of Students for Diversity and Inclusion, Dre Domingue, EdD, at

Posse Foundation

color photo of Posse students in Davidson shirts with President Quillen
Inaugural Davidson Posse Miami Scholars with President Quillen.

As a proud partner college of the Posse Foundation, Davidson selects 10 students (out of 1,000+ applicants), through a collaborative and dynamic assessment process, from the greater Miami-Dade area to take part in the organization's STEM Program. The Posse Foundation recruits, trains, and supports Posse Scholars interested in majoring in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). The Posse STEM Program, which includes six additional institutions that recruit Posses from other cities, offers scholars traditional Posse programming plus a two-week summer immersion program, a STEM faculty mentor, and research and internship opportunities in STEM fields.