Office director built program on Forest Grove campus in 2006

by: COURTESY PHOTO: PACIFIC UNIVERSITY - Janet Marling, executive director of the National Insitute for the Study of Transfer Students, celebrates with Pacific Universitys Denise Price-Giesbers (center) and institute founder Bonita Jacobs at a ceremony honoring winners of a transfer champions award.Pacific University’s Denise Price-Giesbers is among the inaugural winners of the Bonita C. Jacobs Transfer Champions Award, sponsored by the National Institute for the Study of Transfer Students.

The award recognizes individuals who have demonstrated exceptional advocacy and leadership in the development and implementation of transfer-focused activities that have made a significant contribution to the improvement of transfer student access, persistence and success.

Price-Giesbers, director of the Office of Transfer Student Services, Pacific Information Center and New Student Orientation, joined four other honorees in Atlanta on Feb. 6 to receive the award during the institute’s Transfer Champions Luncheon.

Price-Giesbers came to Pacific as a transfer student herself, and experienced what she calls “transfer shock.” First as an undergraduate student, and now as a staff member, she advocates for both transfer and non-traditional students, including military veterans and those returning to school after a prolonged period away from the classroom.

A staff member since 1999, Price-Giesbers has championed support services for transfer students by developing a multitude of resources for them and their families, including orientation programs, student housing, bereavement support, peer mentor programs, study plans and academic advising.

Under Price-Giesbers’ leadership, the Office of Transfer Student Services has provided individual support to more than 300 students and developed into a full-service center. A lounge for transfer students to collaborate and study in, and an orientation program customized to meet their specific needs are just two of the office’s key products that Price-Giesbers brought to fruition.

“I believe that my success as an administrator is based on the success and growth of my students,” she said.

The transfer student population at Pacific’s Forest Grove campus has grown substantially in recent years, with a 34 percent jump in the number of transfers since 2009.

Psychology professor Alyson Burns-Glover nominated Price-Giesbers for the award.

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