Center for Working Families at Community Colleges: Clearing the Financial Barriers to Student Success

This MDC report examines the experiences of community colleges across the United States, ranging from California to Connecticut, which are implementing the Center for Working Families (CWF) approach to help low-income families attain financial stability and move up the economic ladder. The approach combines what community colleges do so well—provide individuals with training that connects them to dynamic careers—with the financial support necessary to complete education and connect with a career path. “Center for Working Families at Community Colleges: Clearing the Financial Barriers to Student Success” takes a closer look at this emerging CWF Community College Learning network and shows how the individual colleges provide their CWF services, whom they seek to serve, how the CWF fits and adapts within local college contexts, what outcomes they are accomplishing, and provides the answers to other key learning questions. 

The documentation study allows for a further definition of the approach and how it is being implemented at a diverse set of community colleges, all of which who are members of a network of community colleges managed by MDC, a founding partner in Achieving the Dream, and an organization that has worked for more than 40 years to advance equity and opportunity in the US. Support for the documentation study and for the network of community colleges comes from the Annie E. Casey Foundation.

The report includes case study profiles of participating institutions in the CWF network, important lessons on effective ways colleges have implemented their approaches, ways in which colleges are measuring the impact of the CWF on student success, and how the concept of integrated service delivery has been woven into the overall mission of the college.


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