Skip to Content

National Resource Center for The First-Year Experience and Students in Transition

Our Staff

Jennifer Keup

Title: Executive Director
National Resource Center for The First-Year Experience and Students in Transition
Phone: 803-777-2570
Resources: Curriculum Vitae [pdf]
Jennifer Keup

Jennifer Keup is the Executive Director of the National Resource Center for The First-Year Experience and Students in Transition, where she provides leadership for all of the organization’s operational, strategic, and scholarly activities in pursuit of its mission “to support and advance efforts to improve student learning and transitions into and through higher education.” In this role, she builds upon the National Resource Center’s history of excellence as the founder and leader of the first-year experience movement to develop and pursue the organization’s efforts to serve a worldwide network of educators. This network is dedicated to students’ transition, development, learning, and success, particularly at critical junctures in the educational pipeline.

Under her leadership, the National Resource Center provides opportunities for the exchange of practical and scholarly information, as well as the discussion of trends and issues in our field though the convening of conferences and professional development events, producing a full line of publications, and pursuit of an original research agenda. During her time as director, Keup has worked to spearhead the National Resource Center’s national and international collaboration and partnerships, thought leadership, advancement of publication and professional development outlets, grant acquisition, service development and delivery, and expansion of channels for resource sharing and communication, including online and social media.

Keup’s research interests focus on two complementary areas of scholarship: (a) the first-year experience and students in transition and (b) high-impact practices and institutional interventions. Under the umbrella of this agenda, she has engaged in scholarly work, teaching, and service on many topics, including college student characteristics; the impact of college on students; student access, development, learning, and success; curriculum and student services; peer leadership; community colleges and transfer; student performance, adjustment, and attainment; peer leadership; and institutional effectiveness and assessment. Keup is a co-author of the book Developing and Sustaining Successful First-Year Programs: A Guide for Practitioners and of the CAS Cross-Functional Framework for First-Year Experiences. She also has published several pieces on first-year seminars/experiences and other high-impact practices in scholarly outlets, such as the Journal of College Student Development; Journal of College Student Retention: Research, Theory & Practice; Journal of College Orientation and Transition; Journal of Student Affairs Research and Practice; Journal of Higher Education; and the New Directions series by Wiley.

Keup also serves as an affiliated faculty member in the Department of Educational Leadership and Policies in the College of Education at the University of South Carolina, is a fellow of the McLaughlin College at York University in Canada, and is a research affiliate with the Pullias Center for Higher Education at the University of Southern California Rossier School of Education. She is a principal investigator for the National Resource Center’s involvement in a Bill and Melinda Gates-funded Solution Network focused on identifying, building, and scaling effective and equitable advising solutions across the field of higher education. In addition, Keup is a member of the advisory board for the NASPA Center for First-generation Student Success; a former directorate board chair for the ACPA Commission for Admissions, Orientation, and First-Year Experience; and on several editorial boards for higher education journals in the United States and internationally.

Educational Background

  • Doctor of Philosophy, Higher Education and Organizational Change, UCLA
  • Master of Arts, Higher Education and Organizational Change, UCLA
  • Bachelor of Arts, Psychology, UCLA

Challenge the conventional. Create the exceptional. No Limits.