Supporting Student Success
“Peer tutors provide crucial academic support to their fellow students,” says Tadiyos Gebre, director of academic success and enrichment—one of the three pillar units of the Office of Undergraduate Student Success and Advising. “Two major objectives we aim to accomplish through our Learning Center tutoring program are providing a high-quality academic support service to our students and offering effective professional development opportunities to the peer tutors who provide those services.”
In March 2023, the College Reading and Learning Association presented New York Tech’s Learning Center on the Long Island and New York City campuses with the International Tutor Training Program Certification (ITTPC), a level-one certification authorizing the campus’ peer tutoring center to officially certify students upon their competition of a training program and 25 hours of tutor service.
Regular supervision meetings and performance evaluations ensure that while certified peer tutors continue to grow with critical professional skills, the students they tutor gain an enhanced tutoring experience and understanding of course material.
As director of the department powering the Learning Center, Gebre states that months of rigorous preparation went into receiving the ITTPC, including compiling training content, annual schedules, progress tracking methods, evaluation processes, and more. The certification well-positions the Center to meet and exceed its objectives continuously.
Along with guiding the Learning Center’s growth, Gebre oversees his department’s student success programs: Supplemental Instruction and Peer Success GUIDE. He also administers software for coordinating student services across several departments on campus.
“In this position, I’ve always felt like I work for our students. Ultimately, everything I do is geared toward affecting their success in a positive manner,” says Gebre, who joined New York Tech in 2017 after living in the Midwest for 13 years and working at Nebraska’s Peru State College. “That’s something truly rewarding as I go through each day at work.”
On any given day, Gebre can be found meeting with student leaders and his colleagues to coordinate their work on bringing innovation to student success and enrichment programs. Those who join the department as Learning Center tutors, Supplemental Instruction leaders, Peer Success Guides, peer enrichment coordinators, and graduate assistants tend to stay on board for much of their time as New York Tech students, says Gebre.
“It has been truly amazing to witness our student workers’ growth from the first time I met them for an interview to their last days of working with us prior to graduation,” he says. “Our department’s commitment and ability to provide essential professional development opportunities by employing students for these positions is definitely something that makes us proud.”
When he’s not at work, Gebre is an avid NBA and UFC fan. But his hidden talent lies in the kitchen, where he forgoes following recipes and instead goes “by feeling” as he mixes his ingredients together and whips up dishes that “turn out pretty tasty most of the time.”
Following one’s intuition is a common theme for Gebre, as he suggests current and prospective students line up small, specific, achievable goals to help them reach their ultimate ambitions.
“If you feel like you need to improve something, do it now, and don’t waste time. Come to college with an open mind and be an engaged member of the community—if you take advantage of most things available to you and embrace new experiences, your time at New York Tech will be a wonderful ride.”