Date of Award

Summer 8-2020

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)


Educational Leadership

First Advisor

Bryan McCoy


Summer melt is the phenomenon where students complete the requirements and get accepted into a higher education institution but fail to matriculate following high school graduation. Lower socioeconomic status students are affected the most, and summer melt rates range from 22% to 50% in school districts (Arnold, K., Fleming, S., DeAnda, M., Castleman, B., & Wartman, K., 2009; Castleman & Page, 2014a; Naranjo, Pang, & Alvarado, 2016). After high school graduation, students are left on their own to navigate through the difficulties of matriculating. The purpose of the study is to create and implement a peer mentor text message campaign to mitigate summer melt. Rooted in Schlossberg’s Transition Theory (STT), the study created an intervention to turn liabilities into assets during the student’s moving through phase (Schlossberg, 1981). It set up a quasi-experimental treatment with ten peer mentors attending higher education institutions across the state. Participating high school seniors were placed in a control group or were paired with peer mentors. Peer mentors delivered scripted text messages during restricted timeframes throughout the summer following the participants’ high school graduation. The results found lower matriculation rates with participants paired with peer mentors than participants in the control group. However, due to participant withdrawal, the results were not statistically significant.