ATD Network News: Mid May Edition

Mid May 2019



(Photo by Lance Thurman)

Sixteen Community Colleges Begin Their Work to Strengthen Student Success as Part of ATD National Network

Sixteen colleges from seven states have strengthened their commitment to improving student success by becoming part of the Achieving the Dream National Network (ATD). The 2019 cohort includes eight community colleges from the state of Connecticut and brings all 12 institutions from the state into the ATD Network. The new cohort of colleges comes as ATD celebrates its 15th anniversary, and they increase the ATD Network to more than 220 institutions from 43 states and the District of Columbia. Read more here.

Sinclair Community College Meets Students Where They Are

On May 5, record numbers totaling 1,300 students of color and 2,103 low-income students received their associate's degrees from Sinclair Community College. The graduation class includes more than 520 African-American males who will be earning degrees or certificates, a 78 percent increase over 2018. Diverse Issues in Higher Education details the college's work to disaggregate student data and to offer tailored student support services, and cites the influence of Achieving the Dream as a contributing factor. Read more here

ATD Board Chair Provides Powerful Testimony to House Subcommittee

On May 9, ATD Board Chair Dr. Pam Eddinger, president of Bunker Hill Community College, appeared before the U.S. House Subcommittee on Higher Education and Workforce Investment. In her testimony, Dr. Eddinger conveyed the economic mobility that community colleges provide, as well as the precarious situation that students often face. "Many students are one small financial disaster away from dropping out," stated Dr. Eddinger. "But they know that college leads to social and economic mobility." More details from the testimony of Dr. Eddinger and her colleagues are available on the NASFAA website

ATD President and CEO Karen Stout Delivers Commencement Address at Odessa College

On May 11, ATD President and CEO Karen Stout delivered the commencement address at Odessa College, an ATD Network college and the 2018 recipient of the Leah Meyer Austin Award. In her address, Dr. Stout cited Marcus Buckingham’s work around the strengths revolution, and encouraged graduates to identify the threads woven through their life and to find their “red thread”. “Your red thread is what grabs your soul,” Dr. Stout shared with the graduates. “It’s what you do when no one tells you what to do.” Read Dr. Stout’s full commencement address.

Annual Reflection Provides Opportunity for Growth

Achieving the Dream is committed to continuous improvement in the services provided to ATD Network colleges. A significant part of this effort is the Annual Reflection, which helps ATD better understand the successes Network colleges have had, and the challenges they've faced over the past year. Last week, all Network colleges should have received instruction on filling out the Annual Reflection Report. If you have any questions, please contact us at

A Caring Adult, Wraparound Services Help Desi Casanova Thrive

As a young teenager, Desi Casanova - a student at ATD Network college Portland Community College - felt judged by the way she spoke, dressed, and presented herself to others. She was discouraged by her teachers and peers, and without support from family or friends, she nearly dropped out of high school. As with many other young people, a caring adult made all the difference for Desi, putting her back on a path to a post-secondary education through ATD's PDX Bridge initiative. Read more here.

Study Shows Wraparound Supports Improve Enrollment, Retention

Holistic Student Supports is one of ATD’s focus areas in our work with community colleges, and an area of growing focus at many colleges. A study released by the University of Chicago suggests that community college students benefit from multiple, wraparound supports to help them overcome barriers as they pursue an associate's degree. Read about the University of Chicago Poverty Lab's study of the One Million Degrees (OMD) program in Illinois that provides comprehensive supports to low-income, highly motivated community college students to help them succeed in school, in work, and in life on the WBEZ website.     


ATD Teaching & Learning Summit: May 30 - June 1, 2019

Due to overwhelming demand, the Teaching & Learning Summit has sold out. We anticipate that we may be able to add a small number of attendees. To be placed on the waitlist, please email Jon Iuzzini, Director of Teaching and Learning, at

2019 ATD Data & Analytics Summit: Data Analytics Through An Equity Lens September 11-13, 2019

Go deep in the data and technology capacity area of the Institutional Capacity Framework. The Summit will help colleges improve student success outcomes by building capacity and a comprehensive, aligned strategy to support a culture of inquiry and evidence; examine the use of data as a lever in pathways reform; and improve institutional effectiveness practices. The two-day summit is designed for institutional researchers, IT professionals, administrators, faculty, and staff as well as members of colleges’ student success and data teams at two-year and four-year institutions. Identify and seize opportunities to use data in more impactful ways to advance student success. Registration opens soon! 

2019 ATD Holistic Student Supports Institute: October 1-4, 2019

Join over 300 colleagues from across the country at the premier working institute for holistic student supports. Whether your college is just beginning conversations on how to more holistically support your students or is deep into the implementation of addressing all student needs, this institute is your opportunity to harness the expertise of Achieving the Dream’s diverse network of colleges and national leaders working to design, implement, and assess a “whole college” approach to improving student outcomes

ATD DREAM 2020: February 18-21, 2020

Connect with more than 2,000 of the nation's thought leaders, policy makers, and investors at DREAM 2020, Achieving the Dream's flagship conference. Share your knowledge and learn how your colleagues across the country are advancing student success.





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