Chairsty Stewart

Placement and Corequisite Program Coordinator

Montana State University, Billings

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at Montana State University, Billings

Chairsty Stewart

Placement and Corequisite Program Coordinator

Montana State University, Billings

Chairsty returned to school as a non-traditional student, graduating from Montana State University Billings in 2006 with a bachelor’s degree in mathematics with a teaching option. While earning her degree, she began tutoring and teaching part-time in the Academic Support Center at MSU Billings where she was first exposed to developmental education. Although her plan was to teach mathematics in a high school setting, she enjoyed teaching adults and began teaching for the ASC full-time in 2006, serving as the Assistant Director of the Academic Support Center in 2010. She earned a master’s degree in mathematics education from MSU Bozeman in 2011. She also attended the Kellogg Institute, earning a certification in adult and developmental education in 2012. Chairsty has also had the privilege of serving as chair of the Developmental Education Department for three years.

Chairsty is passionate about education and developmental education in particular. She enjoys seeing the “light” turn on for her students. She strongly believes that every student has the potential to further his/her education while recognizing that life challenges often mitigate against the traditional full-time education pathway for many students. She was instrumental in developing and implementing a corequisite mathematics at MSU Billings for Contemporary Mathematics (liberal arts mathematics) and Introductory Statistics. The data is still coming in, but the initial results are staggering! On average, over 70% of developmental students are completing their COLLEGE-LEVEL mathematics by taking the corequisite course...some semesters even higher!

Chairsty and her husband are currently in the adoption process and are hoping to fly back to Ethiopia soon to bring home their three children ages 12, 7 and 3.

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15 to Finish

Boost the number of students who are on track for on-time graduation by encouraging enrollment in 15 credits each semester (30 credits per year, including summers). Financial aid dollars, as well as institutional process and practice, should support that standard.

Math Pathways

Ensure all students enroll in and complete gateway math in their first year by designing math courses that are aligned with the skills students need for their chosen program of study.

Corequisite Support

Increase gateway course completion within the first year by enrolling entering students into the college-level math and English courses, providing those who need additional help a concurrent course or lab that offers just-in-time academic support.

Momentum Year

Build momentum so students meet first-year benchmarks: informed choice of meta major or major, enrollment in 30 credits with nine in the program of study and completion of gateway courses. Provide early support and guidance for decision making, using interest assessments and labor-market data.

Academic Maps with Proactive Advising

Default students onto highly-structured academic maps that include 15 credits per semester (or 30 per year), indicate milestone and pre-requisite courses, and empower advisors to effectively monitor progress and provide intervention as needed.

A Better Deal for Returning Adults

Increase degree attainment by inviting adult learners back to complete their education, providing a redesigned system that offers accelerated courses, year-round enrollment and predictable schedules. Give credit for prior learning and experience and additional support to help students navigate the system.

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