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Early Alert Referral Process enhancements launching spring 2018

Jan 18, 2018

With the implementation of Pacific 2020R, the university's refreshed strategic plan, a "Safety Net" initiative team of faculty, staff and students was charged with scaling early alert referral processes initially developed as a result of a Strategic Investment Fund allocation in spring 2015. As a result of this team's efforts, new early alert referral process enhancements are launching this spring 2018. 

In the past, all referrals made using Pacific's Student Referral System have been responded to by Success Coaches in Student Academic Support Services. These Coaches are early adopters in using Salesforce CRM (constituent relationship management) tools to maximize staff in-person and electronic outreach to students in need of support. Effective this spring, Salesforce CRM tools are scaling to support the following departments that provide services essential to the success of undergraduate students at Pacific:   

  • Student-Athlete Services
  • Community Involvement Program (CIP)
  • General Academic Tutoring Center (GATC)
  • International Programs & Services (IPS)
  • Placement Testing
  • Services for Students with Disabilities (SSD) 
  • Student Academic Support Services (SASS) / Dean of Students Office
  • Student Writing Center (SWC)  

Throughout the spring semester, members of the Safety Net Initiative team will continue to refine early alert referral processes as well as expand proactive outreach made to students identified as at-risk using data from Pacific's Office of Institutional Research. The team is also collaborating with Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) and other campus partners to expand mental health-related professional development and training resources for the Pacific community.  

The Safety Net initiative team aims to maximize Pacific's ability to holistically and efficiently identify students at-risk and connect each student with appropriate university resources which foster student development and academic success. The work of this team will continue through spring 2019. For questions or information about the Safety Net Initiative, please contact the team leads: Elisa Anders at or Lynn King at  

Frequently Asked Questions

Provided below are some Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) related to referring students in need of support. For additional questions related to the Student Referral System, contact a Success Coach in Student Academic Support Services (SASS) at 209.946.7702 or  

What is Pacific's Student Referral System? Pacific's Student Referral System serves as a "hub" or central point for members of the University community to refer a student in need of guidance and support.   

How can I submit a referral? There are two ways you can refer a student for support:  

  1. Complete the Support Services Referral Form
  2. Call a Success Coach at 209.946.7702

What happens after I've submitted a referral? A copy of your original referral submission and case number will be immediately emailed to you. Next, a Pacific staff member will reach out to the student within one business day by phone, email, text, or other communication. Once contact has been made with the student, staff will speak privately with them to assess their needs and discuss appropriate resources and support. As the referrer, you should expect to receive an update once contact has been made with the student. While repeated efforts will be made to contact the student, students are allowed to decline services and support.  

What services can students access through the Student Referral System? Any university service, but the most frequently used are counseling & psychological services, financial aid assistance, career guidance, tutoring and/or academic counseling. If a student needs support beyond that which can be provided on campus, staff will work to connect the student with appropriate community resources.  

Should I tell my student that I am referring them? Research has shown that students respond better to referral-based support services when the faculty or staff who referred them communicates to the student that they are doing so. As such, we highly encourage that you speak with the student about your concerns before referring them. However, we understand there may be more complex situations in which you do not feel equipped or comfortable to speak with the student first. In these situations, please submit your referral and we will tailor our outreach appropriately.   

Will my student respond to outreach from referral staff? Staff will make numerous attempts to contact students who have been referred. These contacts may include emails, phone calls, text messages, and when appropriate, in-person wellness checks. Although repeated attempts will be made to contact the student, there will be some instances in which the student does not respond to or engage with outreach. In these cases, we ensure the student's physical and emotional well-being and encourage them to contact us when they are ready.  

How many absences must a student have before I refer them for support? Although there really isn't a magic number, we would advise that you refer any student who has missed more than a week of class, or missed a significant assignment or exam. Additionally, please report unusual behavior such as strong students who suddenly stop attending class, or students who do not respond to your own outreach attempts.  

Will I receive updates? After submitting a referral, you will receive an automated message confirming the receipt of the referral and the office your referral was submitted to. Once a staff member has connected with the student and assessed their needs, you will be contacted and provided an update. Please note, there are some situations in which staff will be unable to provide you with all details of a student's situation, but we will share what we can.  

What if I haven't received a status update? Often, if you haven't heard back about a referral, staff is still working to make contact with the student. However, if at any time you would like an update on a case or to provide additional information about a student you have referred, please contact Student Academic Support Services at 209.946.7702 or by emailing

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