BSA scholars and mentors on Tubman Lawn at family BBQ

About Engaged Learning & Student Support

Engaged Learning and Student Support (ELSS) fosters deep and meaningful learning. 

The seeds for ELSS were planted decades ago with Bowie State University's TRIO-Student Support Services program. Using a community-oriented approach, TRIO offered tutoring and other supports to help first-generation college students reach their goals. In 2009, funding from the Institute for Higher Education Policy (IHEP) and WalMart provided resources to develop Scholars Studio and the Faculty Think Tank--interdisciplinary learning communities for first-year students and faculty. The faculty partnerships established in Scholars Studio and the Think Tank allowed TRIO to more fully reach its goal of cultivating academic spaces conducive for first-generation student success. Scholars Studio and its faculty partnerships continued to evolve over the years, and in 2016, Bulldog Scholars Academy (BSA) was added to the roster. A summer program that employs the Scholars Studio learning model, BSA provides incoming freshman an opportunity to live on campus while earning six credits toward graduation. BSA was expanded in 2019 to include Operation Navigation, a peer mentoring program that helps students navigate their first year. The following year, the programs were streamlined, and ELSS was born. ELSS maintains its community orientation and goal of cultivating transformative and supportive learning. Learn more about ELSS below.