In an article titled “Grounding Our Inquiry and Change Work in Equitable Post-Graduation Success,” Founder and President Rob Johnstone describes NCII’s approach to supporting colleges in an exploration of regional labor market data (LMI) to understand how their programs “add up” for graduates. Initially designed as part of the Bank of America Jobs Initiative, NCII is now applying this methodology to help teams start redesign initiatives with this analysis. This process involves helping colleges leverage LMI to assess which programs lead to family sustaining wages and for whom, and establish intentional goals for closing persistent equity gaps in both education and employment outcomes. Read the full article.
Fifth Rural Guided Pathways Institute focuses on teaching and learning inside and outside the classroom
NCII’s October 2023 Rural Guided Pathways institute brought together the 16 participating colleges in Salt Lake City, elevating opportunities for rethinking teaching and learning, both inside and outside the classroom. In collaboration with Phase Two Advisory and the Community College Research Center (CCRC), participants explored strategies for scaling holistic student support, including the role that student services professionals play in teaching and learning and the role that faculty play in advising and student support. Keynotes and concurrent sessions also discussed ways to foster a teaching and learning culture that creates a sense of belonging and engagement for each learner, from entry through completion. Learn more.
NCII’s hosted the fifth California Guided Pathways 2.0 institute in Oakland in September 2023, convening the 37 participating colleges for a deep-dive on ways to foster an institution-wide commitment to scaled guided pathways implementation for more equitable student outcomes. Cross-functional teams of classified staff, faculty, administrators, and union representation received both relevant inspiration and practical applications from peers in the state and across the nation. Topics ranged from ensuring everyone knows the role they play in supporting students’ success, to advancing a culture of caring across the institution, to rethinking business processes to optimize the student experience, to considering the contributions of back of the house support functions (i.e., IT, facilities, HR, research) to successful guided pathways development. Learn more.
In summer 2023, NCII helped launch Leadership Academy for Student Success cohorts in Michigan, New York, and Texas. Through a partnership with the Aspen Institute’s College Excellence Program, this project replicates an innovative model developed in Ohio to build leadership capacity and help colleges manage succession planning. A collective of 150+ mid-level college faculty and staff will participate as Student Success Fellows across the four states this year.
Through the Rural Guided Pathways Project, NCII recently asked rural college leaders and national experts about what makes institutional redesign different in rural communities. This series of short video clips offers insights on the unique opportunities and challenges rural colleges and their students face, the ways the guided pathways approach can advance their collective success, and the essential role community partners play in this work. Learn more.
NCII and the Community College Research Center (CCRC) cohosted this virtual summer institute focused on reimagining students’ onboarding experiences. Through capsule sessions held across three weeks, colleges learned about CCRC’s Ask, Connect, Inspire, and Plan framework and discussed practical changes their institutions can make to ensure all students enter a program of study aligned to their interests, strengths, and aspirations within the first year. Teams also dove into specific strategies for integrating student financial stability supports throughout the onboarding process to improve access, retention, and informed program choice. Sessions featured practitioners and institutional leaders who shared perspectives, insights, and emerging student impact from their own onboarding redesign efforts. Learn more.
NCII is partnering with the Institute for Evidence-Based Change (IEBC) to scale its Caring Campus approach to all five institutions in the Alamo College District (TX) and ensure new student retention through a critical point — the first two weeks of each student’s first term. NCII will support the colleges in integrating guided pathways, student financial stability, and career connections strategies throughout this redesign effort.
Awarded every two years, the $1 million Aspen Prize for Community College Excellence is the nation’s signature recognition for America’s community colleges. NCII serves as a key advisor for the Aspen Prize and supports multiple aspects of the Prize process.
Institute #3 for the Rural Guided Pathways Project, held in Birmingham, AL, focused on the role of the institution and community stakeholders. The 16 colleges, along with their community partners and coaches, discussed ways to expand the college-going mindset in their communities. They also explored innovative models for connecting students to programs of study through dual enrollment and other high school partnerships. In addition, colleges received, evaluated, and began discussing their college’s labor market data. Learn more.
NCII will facilitate replication of Ohio’s innovative Leadership Academy for Student Success in Michigan, New York, and Texas. Designed to enhance the leadership capacity of mid-level college practitioners, NCII is carrying out this three-year initiative in partnership with the Aspen Institute College Excellence Program and the Success Center for Ohio’s Community Colleges. Learn more.