The Cougar Climb

Kean introduces the Cougar Climb to help incoming freshmen succeed

Campus Life > The Cougar Climb
The Cougar Climb
The Cougar Climb is a new incentive created by multiple departments at Kean to help students stay on track for graduation.
Abigail Anne Rafael, Senior Editor

The Cougar Climb is a new incentive created by Kean University to help students garner the best college experience possible. The Cougar Climb was also built to help students stay on track to graduate within four years. Incoming freshmen for this 2019-2020 school year are the first of the Kean student body to have the opportunity to utilize the Cougar Climb.

"The inspiration behind the Cougar Climb was to get students more connected, more involved and to [foster] a valuable experience at Kean. We really want to make sure students graduate within the four year time frame and are successful after they graduate," said Coordinator for Student Involvement Jonathan Lopez. "The Cougar Climb is one of those programs that could better equip students to succeed throughout their college career but also post college."

The Cougar Climb is a university wide initiative that will propel Kean students to reaching new heights. The program was created in conjunction with every department to support Kean students.

The Cougar Climb is similar in concept to the curriculum guide sheets and four year plans for majors, but instead targets student engagement. The program focuses on six domains as follows:

  • Academic Engagement
  • Career Development
  • Health and Wellness
  • Social Engagement
  • Civic Engagement
  • Global and Cultural Awareness

In each domain exists tasks students can complete for credit. Although individuals do not need to complete everything, it would be wise for students to strive for it because it will assist them in staying on track to graduate. First year students who complete the first year's tasks will also be entered into a raffle to win free tuition for a semester. To preview the Cougar Climb students can check out the Paths section of their Cougar Link account.

"The Cougar Climb path allows [freshmen students] to come freshman year, make progress toward their goals and visualize where they can go by junior or senior year," said Lopez.

The Cougar Climb: First Year Experience can be viewed on the Kean website. An example of tasks to complete within the domain of Career Development is as follows:

Career Development

Along with required criteria, the Cougar Climb also lists optional tasks. Optional tasks within the Career Development domain are as follows:

  • Attend a Job Fair
  • Earn an on-campus job
  • Create a LinkedIn Profile

As students complete domains, they will be able to redeem prizes. Students who complete most of the Cougar Climb during their time at Kean will also be invited to a Cougar Climb Recognition Dinner.

Currently the Cougar Climb is only available for first year students. However, paths for upperclassmen will be made available in the Fall of 2020.

For more information students can check out Kean's Cougar Climb webpage, visit the Involvement Center in the Miron Student Center (MSC), Room 303, email at or call in at (908) 737-5270.

about the author

Abigail Anne Rafael, Senior Editor

Abigail Anne Rafael is the Senior Editor for The Cougar’s Byte and first joined staff in January 2018. She is a communication major with a concentration in public relations. Abigail aims to inspire and motivate readers with her writing. After graduating from Kean, she hopes to work for a Catholic company to dispel mistruths about the Church.