Date of Conferral



Doctor of Business Administration (D.B.A.)


Business Administration


Mary I. Dereshiwsky


During the first decade of the 21st Century, U.S. college enrollment rates increased, public funding fell by 30%, oversight structures changed, and funding algorithms switched to outcome-based metrics such as retention, progression, and graduation rates. Drawing from Vroom's expectancy theory, the purpose of this correlational study was to provide decision makers with information about the factors associated with an implemented strategic initiative at a Connecticut community college. The research question addressed the correlation between the strategic initiative, retention, and organizational financial sustainability using hierarchical, binary regression analysis of archival data for 2,558 first-time full-time students at a Connecticut community college. Hosmer and Lemeshow testing [Ï?2HL(8, N = 2558) = 2.964, p = 0.937] indicated that a relationship existed between completion of the initiative, grades, and retention while controlling for student demographic variables. Overlapping 95% CIs for participant and nonparticipant retention probabilities demonstrated that the participants and nonparticipants might have similar retention behavior. Educational business leaders may benefit from these findings by reevaluating the design, implementation, and assessment of the strategic initiative, eliminating conflicting initiative goals, and researching additional student attributes or environmental factors that correlate with student retention leading to improved institutional financial sustainability. The implications for social change include growing students' human capital to enhance the community's social welfare.