Cover for Relationship-Rich Education
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ISBN: 9781421439365

November 3, 2020 | Johns Hopkins University Press

Education luminaries Peter Felten and Leo M. Lambert challenge us never to forget that undergraduate education is at heart a relational enterprise. Relationship-Rich Education offers a cogent practitioner’s guide to the art of teaching and mentorship—and a stern challenge to institutional leaders to prioritize and celebrate relationship-rich cultures. A game-changer in higher education.

W. Brad Johnson, United States Naval Academy, author of On Being a Mentor: A Guide for Higher Education Faculty

This book takes an innovative approach to student success interventions, focusing on the essential role of relationships in shaping student experience and long-term success. The book includes numerous and detailed examples of how to create relationship-rich environments and incorporates the voices of faculty, staff, administrators, and students to bring its big ideas to life.

Adrianna Kezar, Pullias Center for Higher Education / Delphi Project on Changing Faculty and Student Success, University of Southern California, coauthor of The Gig Academy: Mapping Labor in the Neoliberal University

At a time of unprecedented transformation, Felten and Lambert demonstrate why the future of higher education must be grounded in the creation of welcoming campus communities that encourage a sense of belonging. They offer a compelling, insightful guide to fostering relationship-rich undergraduate education and fulfilling the burgeoning equity mandate at institutions of all types.

Lynn Pasquerella, President, Association of American Colleges & Universities

This is the right book for a challenging time. Whether on campus or online or somewhere in between, relationships matter, perhaps now more than ever. In this wonderful book, Felten and Lambert remind us of that truth and show us practical examples of relationship-rich environments for students, faculty, and staff.

Ted Mitchell, President, American Council on Education

Anyone who works on a college or university campus—administrators, faculty, and staff—will come away from this book with fresh inspiration to form supportive and meaningful relationships with students. Readers will also find here a trove of creative, practical strategies for achieving that goal.

James M. Lang, Assumption College, author of Distracted: Why Students Can’t Focus and What You Can Do About It

As our country becomes more diverse and our institutions serve the new majority—first generation students, students of color, and/or low-income students—colleges and universities must learn how to build trusted relationships that demonstrate authentic caring, respect, understanding, validation, and love. Relationship-Rich Education provides guidelines for institutions to follow to ensure success for all students.

Mildred García, EdD, President, American Association of State Colleges and Universities

Full of numerous examples of enacting relationship-rich environments, this book marshals a broad range of evidence to make a coherent argument about the importance of relationships while offering specific ways in which they can be enhanced at an individual, departmental, and institutional level. Relationship-Rich Education will resonate with higher education practitioners.

Nicholas A. Bowman, University of Iowa, coauthor of How College Affects Students: 21st Century Evidence That Higher Education Works

The content of this impressively researched book has the potential to transform institutional culture. The voices of these students grabbed me in powerful ways, enabling me to understand more deeply the value of rich relationships to undergraduate success across institutional types and student status.

Louis Albert, Arizona State University

Given the disruption of the campus experience due to the pandemic, the identified characteristics and examples provided by Felten and Lambert are even more vital for institutions seeking ways to build stronger relationships between their students and their institutions.

Wally Boston

Felten and Lambert have written a valuable and timely book that should be required reading for all administrators, faculty, and staff in higher education. They have shared and explained important best practices that the reader could learn to emulate to enhance relationship-rich education within their own institutions. Being fully aware of the present challenges to institutions, they provide vital information on surviving and thriving in the highly competitive academic environment.

Leo Z. Archambault

Relationship Rich Education is a useful read for faculty, staff, and students looking for sources that might help them with advocacy efforts related to the importance of fostering human connection in higher education. … Many of us know intuitively that relationships matter; Felton and Lambert provide the evidence necessary to help faculty, staff, and students alike make the case.

Laura Harrison

Harrison, Laura. 2021. “Relationship Rich Education: How Human Connections Drive Success in College” (book review). Journal of College and Character 22 (3): 266-268.

[Felten and Lambert’s] argument is a coherent and holistic dive into higher education’s critical need to shape what it does around a fundamental and all-encompassing consideration: our deep human need for relationship.

Alex Playsted

Playsted, Alex. 2021. “Relationship-Rich Education: How Human Connections Drive Success in College” (book review). International Journal for Students as Partners 5 (2) 233-235.

If you’re ready to be challenged and encouraged to place relationships with students at the center of your institutional practice, this book is a must-read.

Andrea Layton

Layton, Andrea. 2021. “Relationship-Rich Education: How Human Connections Drive Success in College” (book review). Teachers College Record, July 6, 2021.

The book provides the reader with useful guidelines for how to engage students in meaningful conversations with peers, faculty, and staff to help them to overcome hesitations about their own capacity, or to seek expert guidance and encouragement to act. It leaves no doubt that institutions that succeed in creating a relationship-rich culture will endow students with highly valuable mentoring relationships critical for their education and lives.

Gabriela Pleschová

As students, faculty, and staff get back to campus, it is worth taking a page from both books to intentionally support students in pursuing richer and more equitable relationships across the full arc of college life. The authors offer specific examples and advice that readers will find worthwhile to explore.

Mary Taylor Huber