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ERIC Number: ED509711
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2010-Mar
Pages: 17
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
Collaborating to Create Change: How El Paso Community College Improved the Readiness of Its Incoming Students through Achieving the Dream. Culture of Evidence Series, Report No. 4
Kerrigan, Monica Reid; Slater, Doug
Community College Research Center, Columbia University
Launched in 2003, "Achieving the Dream: Community Colleges Count" is a multiyear national initiative designed to improve educational outcomes for community college students, particularly students of color and low-income students. Supported by Lumina Foundation for Education and other funders, the initiative has grown to include 98 community colleges and 4 universities in 22 states. This report describes one community college's participation in Achieving the Dream. Along with 26 other colleges that were the first to enter the initiative, El Paso Community College (EPCC) joined Achieving the Dream in the summer of 2004 (colleges have joined the initiative through competitive selection in five rounds, the last of which started in summer 2009). In accord with the design of the Achieving the Dream initiative, EPCC has over the past five years implemented a number of interventions aimed at boosting student success, most of which focus on two interrelated goals. The first goal is to help prospective students improve their readiness for college so that when they do start college at EPCC, they can avoid enrollment in developmental courses and begin immediately taking credit-bearing, college-level offerings. The second goal is to help entering EPCC students who are required to take developmental courses to successfully complete that coursework in a much shorter period of time. The Achieving the Dream initiative is based on a five step improvement process--(1) commit to change; (2) use data to prioritize actions; (3) engage stakeholders; (4) implement, evaluate, improve; and (5) establish a culture of continuous improvement. This report uses that framework to discuss EPCC's participation in the initiative. The authors focus a good deal of attention on how EPCC faculty and staff and especially stakeholders outside the college became involved with these efforts, because the development of strong working relationships among El Paso educators both within and outside the community college is central in understanding the progress EPCC has made over the past several years. In a final section, they sketch out lessons learned by key individuals involved in EPCC's Achieving the Dream work. These lessons may have relevance for other colleges considering similar plans for increasing student success. (Contains 4 figures and 2 footnotes.)
Community College Research Center. Available from: CCRC Publications. Teachers College, Columbia University, 525 West 120th Street Box 174, New York, NY 10027. Tel: 212-678-3091; Fax: 212-678-3699; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: High Schools; Higher Education; Postsecondary Education; Secondary Education; Two Year Colleges
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: Lumina Foundation for Education
Authoring Institution: Columbia University, Community College Research Center; Achieving the Dream, Inc.
Identifiers - Location: Texas