Reframing the Question of Equity: Understanding the Growing Importance of Success for Community Colleges’ Part-Time Students - EAB*

This resource is produced by an ATD investor and is noted with an asterisk (*). These investor-produced materials are not endorsed by Achieving the Dream nor do they represent the only solutions to the various challenges they address. As a body of information, these resources are intended to support Achieving the Dream Institutions throughout the process of institutional reform and assist in creating a culture of continuous improvement.



The purpose of this white paper is to explain why we need to focus more on part-time students to close the achievement gap in community colleges.

Over the past two decades, colleges have enrolled a greater percentage of disadvantaged students, but these students are not graduating at rates comparable to those of their peers. Worse, they are leaving our colleges with debt and no credential to show for their effort. While the social imperative is clear, even the most pragmatic college administrator knows the importance of graduating more students. With current college enrollment declines across most of the country, “risk sharing” proposals under consideration in the reauthorization of the Higher Education Act, and performance-based funding models affecting colleges in 35 states, the current climate demands aggressive action to support student success.

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