ATD Network News: January Edition

What’s New at DREAM 2020  

Our annual national convening, DREAM 2020, is just weeks away! Hear from the country’s leading voices in holistic student supports, equity, teaching and learning, data and technology, and dual enrollment. DREAM 2020 has a number of exciting new elements, including an ATD Library where you can pick up the latest reports, guidebooks, toolkits, and resources; fresh programming on K-12 pathways; and a Recognition Luncheon to honor ATD Network colleges. DREAM kicks off with our second annual Equity Institute, which we anticipate selling out in advance. Join us in National Harbor, MD! 

The Case for Strong Teaching and Learning Practices 

Community college leaders have increasingly focused on restructuring student services to improve the student experience, and they have begun to tackle barriers to student success outside the classroom. Achieving the Dream, through our Teaching and Learning work, is helping institutions build inclusive, evidence-based classroom instructional practices and faculty professional learning strategies to implement models that support students in achieving their academic and professional goals. In a blog post, Jon Iuzzini, ATD’s Director of Teaching and Learning, details our Teaching and Learning work, and previews Achieving the Dream’s upcoming work in the area

Eight Students Chosen as 2020 DREAM Scholars 

Eight community college students from Achieving the Dream Network colleges have been chosen as 2020 DREAM Scholars. The ATD DREAM Scholars program works with students to enhance their leadership, critical thinking, and networking skills. They bring the student voice front and center to the convening and spend time talking with attendees, speakers, and other special guests. The DREAM Scholars experience culminates in a plenary presentation to more than 2,000 community college leaders, a session that always stands out as a highlight of the conference. Read more about ATD’s 2020 DREAM Scholars. 

OER Degree Initiative Summative Report Will be Released in February

In 2016, as Achieving the Dream began our Open Educational Resources Degree Initiative work, the OER degree model was not widely adopted. Most OER efforts were undertaken by individual faculty in individual courses and not meaningfully connected to the broader goals of the institution. Converting entire degree programs to OER requires colleges to intentionally integrate OER degree work into their institutional processes and organizational strategies, a lesson that ATD has learned must be part of any reform designed to improve completion rates. Dr. Richard Sebastian, ATD Director of Open and Digital Learning, reviews our OER work to date, and previews the release of the upcoming OER Report, which includes promising findings for the field.

How to Get the Most Out of DREAM 

Achieving the Dream President and CEO Dr. Karen A. Stout has seen the organization’s annual DREAM Conference as a college president and as the leader of Achieving the Dream. The annual DREAM Conference is undoubtedly the most exciting (and busiest!) season around ATD, and we’re excited about a number of new aspects at DREAM this year. In her latest blog, Dr. Stout details what to expect at DREAM and shares her recommendations on how to maximize your time over a busy few days.

A Unique Collaboration to Increase Success of Native American Students

In 2017, with guidance from the American Indian Higher Education Consortium and the American Indian College Fund, tribal colleges and universities and four service providers — Achieving the Dream, Ascendium Education Group, Carnegie Math Pathways and the Center for Community College Student Engagement — embarked on a collaborative journey to strengthen persistence and completion and reduce loan default rates among Native American Students. The publication, Project Success: Improving Persistence and Completion of Native American Students, tells the stories, in their words, of 20 TCUs that participated in the partnership. Their efforts, which are benefitting Native American students in multiple ways, will inspire you. Come hear more of these stories at this year’s DREAM Conference where 10 TCUs will be telling their stories in 12 concurrent sessions. 

A Modest Investment In Student Supports Yields Promising Strategies 

A majority of U.S. states have established aspirational postsecondary attainment. Oregon’s goal of 80 percent of the population earning a credential by 2025 is the most bold among them, yet the state remains well short of its goal despite modest gains over the past decade. The Oregon legislature has responded by investing $9.3 million in grants to increase enrollment and completion rates for first-generation and low-income community college students. With funding from these grants, ATD Network college Portland Community College is working with ATD’s Gateway to College program to facilitate the exchange of best practices between grantee colleges and document their collective learning. The grants, and the community of practice that has been built among grantees, have accelerated the expansion of practices that improve the odds of success for community college students. 

Community College Women Succeed Initiative: Continuing to Stretch our Reach

In December, as part of our Community College Women Succeed initiative, Achieving the Dream released a discussion guide that profiles the stories of several adult women students charting new paths for themselves and their families. Throughout the week of February 3, we will share one student mother video each day and post questions from the discussion guide to spur conversation about Community College Women across social media platforms. We encourage you to join in the discussion at #CCWomenSucceed and share stories from your own campus and community. We’ll reshare your stories over the course of the week. Visit our Community College Women Succeed page to view the discussion guide and videos, and join us beginning February 3. We’re also pleased to share a new partnership with College Success for Single Mothers, an initiative of the National College Transition Network. Read more about NCTN’s work to support single mothers.

ATD Selected as a Gates Intermediary for Scale Partner 

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation announced that Achieving the Dream is one of 12 organizations selected to serve as intermediaries—connectors, advisors, strategists—between partner groups and colleges and universities that are in the process of substantial transformations around student success. Through this investment, the foundation estimates that the work of this cohort of grantees collaborating with colleges will lead to roughly 1.5 million additional college credentials by 2025. READ MORE about ATD’s selection as a Gates Intermediary

Teaching & Learning Summit Announced, ATD Issues Call for Proposals 

Join us in St. Louis, MO from April 22-25 to explore how your college can create a culture of teaching and learning excellence for student success. Share your successes, challenges, and expertise with colleagues from across the country at ATD’s Second Annual Teaching & Learning Summit. We are accepting proposals for breakout workshops from colleges working to address one of a number of topics, including High Impact Practices; Open Educational Resources; Engaging Adjunct Faculty; Culturally Responsive Practices; Guided Pathways; and more. Visit our Teaching & Learning site for a full list of topics, and more details on the Summit. Proposals are due February 26. 


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