Document Type


Publication Date

Winter 12-10-2019


Recreation facilities are an integral part of the university community. The Aggie Recreation Center is a place that helps foster a well balanced student. The ARC provides students with a myriad of opportunities for recreation, exercise, and community that can support students on their academic journey. This report explored the association between ARC facility use and student persistence to the next term at Utah State University. METHODS: Students recreation center use was captured with entry log-ins as students entered the facility. Students who had a record of using the facility were compared to similar students who did not have a record of facility use. Students were compared using prediction-based propensity score matching. Students who used the recreation center were matched with non-users based on their persistence predication and their propensity to participate. FINDINGS: Students were 99% similar following matching. Participating and comparison students were compared using difference-in-difference testing. Students who access ARC resources were significantly more likely to persist at USU than similar students who did not use library resources (DID = 0.0115, p < .001). The unstandardized effect size can be estimated through student impact. It is estimated that library resources assisted in retaining 130 (CI: 87 – 173) students each year who were otherwise not expected to persist.