Innovative community colleges focus on real student success

Wendy Sedlak, Ph.D.
May 22 · 3 min read
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  • Design a small mandatory intervention such as a course or an orientation program that eases students’ entry into the program and the college. To increase the likelihood of student success, the intervention should include academic, personal, and career components. For example, Des Moines Area Community College offers a one-credit student development course for all students in which they set the course and direction for their time at the college. This engagement has resulted in a 17 percent increase in retention during the first semester.
  • Engage employers and four-year universities in advisory committees; feeding back information to inform program design and showcasing the variety of pathways available to students with employers as well as seamless transitions to further education.
  • Move from one-on-one employer relationships to a community focus that creates a regional employer pipeline. A good example of this approach can be seen at Columbus State Community College in Ohio, which serves both students and employers — highlighting career opportunities along the way.

Today's Students / Tomorrow's Talent

Preparing today's students to thrive in tomorrow's world

Wendy Sedlak, Ph.D.

Written by

Sedlak is the strategy director for research and data at Lumina Foundation.

Today's Students / Tomorrow's Talent

Preparing today's students to thrive in tomorrow's world