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University Business Magazine Honors Northwood University as “Model of Excellence” Institution

December 1, 2016

Specialty business university recognized for creating program to help probationary students acclimate to campus environment

MIDLAND, MICHIGAN, Dec. 1, 2016 – Northwood University was one of eight colleges and universities nationwide honored by University Business magazine in its winter 2016 Models of Excellence recognition program. Sponsored by CASHNet, the Models of Excellence program recognizes innovative approaches to encouraging and nurturing student success on campus.

“Northwood’s Educational Success Program—ESP—creates a community for students who may need extra support while learning to navigate their new campus,” said University Business senior editor Tim Goral. “Giving students resources they need before they actually need them is not only practical, it is empowering them to make the right choices for themselves and their education.”

“Admitting one needs the assistance of a summer bridge program to ease the transition from high school to college is not typically a point of pride. But incoming students who participate in Northwood University’s Educational Success Program in Michigan walk across campus with their heads held high,” said Kristin Stehouwer, executive vice president, chief operating officer and chief academic officer at Northwood University. “Our students are absolutely proud of it. It’s something that’s part of their identity here.”

ESP is a 12-day immersion for incoming Northwood students who have been admitted on a probationary basis. Living on campus, they take development mathematics and English classes and engage in a variety of co-curricular activities that help them adjust to college life, meet academic expectations, and acclimate themselves to their new campus and community. Peer mentors — many of them prior ESP participants — live in residence halls with the incoming students in the program, supporting them throughout their first year at Northwood.

“The mentors are part of what makes this such an effective program,” Stehouwer said. “They were in the shoes of the students who are in the Educational Success Program. They understand what the adjustment is like — to college life, to Northwood University, to the Midland, Michigan, community.”

Peer mentors aren’t the only helpers. ESP students also have the chance to get used to public speaking by introducing themselves to the university’s president and other senior officials, including Stehouwer, at a gathering. At the conclusion of the program, another such meeting is arranged. Their remarks serve more than a celebratory purpose.

“We believe in hands-on and applied learning,” Stehouwer said. “When they get up and speak publicly, they’re practicing the skills they’ve been working on.”

In addition to Northwood University, winter 2016 Models of Excellence honorees include: University of Pittsburgh, Moravian College, Seton Hill University, Bossier Parish Community College, SUNY Geneseo, Washburn University, and Westchester Community College.

“The winter 2016 Models of Excellence programs are creating opportunities for students that encourage success,” said Edward Worrilow, head of marketing and communications at CASHNet. “We are pleased to recognize their efforts alongside University Business.”

Launched in 2015, Models of Excellence is a national recognition program honoring colleges and universities that have implemented innovative, effective and inter-departmental initiatives that are bolstering student success. The program is sponsored by CASHNet, a leading payment technology provider in higher education that allows institutions to simplify electronic billing, accept payments all over campus, offer flexible payments plans, create online storefronts, and more all on one secure platform.

For more information about Northwood University, visit, or call 800.622.9000.About University Business

University Business is the leading publication for senior managers at colleges and universities throughout the United States, reaching 75,000 leaders who manage enrollment, technology, business, finance, facilities and academic affairs. More information is available at

About CASHNet

CASHNet is a leading payment technology provider of secure transaction services to over 700 campuses in higher education, reaching millions of students nationwide. Whether it’s to simplify electronic billing, accept payments all over campus, offer flexible tuition payment plans, or create online storefronts, CASHNet fits everyday campus needs. As a leader in the industry for over 25 years, CASHNet has constantly evolved to create the secure and simplified experience students, payers, and administrators require. More information can be found at

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