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Achieving the Dream is a comprehensive non-governmental reform movement for student success. Harford Community College has joined a network of higher ed institutions, coaches and advisors, state policy teams, investors and partners, to help our students and more than 4 million other community college students have a better economic opportunity and achieve their dreams.
Nearly one-half of all students seeking higher education choose a community college. Fewer than half of those students actually finish what they start.
Community colleges remain the nation's gateway to good jobs for millions of students who dream of a better tomorrow. Yet too often these dreams are cut short.
For the first time in our history, the current generation of college-aged Americans will be less educated than their parents' generation. Those without an education will be unable to compete in a national landscape that more than ever before demands high-level job skills.
Harford Community College began its official membership with Achieving the Dream on June 2018 when a 10-member interdisciplinary team took part in the Kick-Off event in Cleveland, Ohio. Drs. Phillips, Jackson, and Thomas attended along with Dr. Wohlers, Dr. Karmel, Patrick Elliott, Valerie Swain, Nancy Dysard, Jennie Towner, and Elizabeth Mosser. At this meeting, they spent several days working alongside our Leadership Coach (Dr. Karen Stout) and Data Coach (Leon Hill) to further steep ourselves in the 7-capacities outlined by ATD.
Our entire campus community will be vital to the reflection necessary to fully maximize and maintain the benefits of membership with ATD. In early fall 2018, a broad cross-section of campus employees will take the Institutional Capacity Assessment Tool (ICAT), which will allow us to self-assess our current progress in each of the seven capacity areas. Results will be made available to us at which time our coaches will lead the campus in a ‘World Café’ to review our trends and identify potential areas for growth. Around the same time, a core team and a data team will be identified to navigate our success efforts.
Much of this first year will be based on dialog and interaction as we meet with our coaches and leverage their services to align and scale existing programs or to develop new, wide-reaching initiatives. As our coaches mindfully get to know our campus and surrounding community, we will be able to create an integrated system of holistic, student-centered reforms that lead to educational and career success for the next generation of learners and leaders.
To enable the interactive nature of our ATD participation, we will be communicating regularly with the campus community about ATD-related activity and expectations. There will also be an electronic hub to help disseminate and collect information pertinent to the seven capacities and the application to HCC programs.
Members from across the Harford Community College community recently attended the national conference for Achieving the Dream, DREAM 2019. During this 3-day immersive learning experience, we were able to further steep ourselves in meaningful conversations around high-impact practices for improving student success. Some of the main take-aways included the importance and application of a growth mindset, specific tactics for reaching adjunct faculty, and how to address the needs of our students in a holistic way. We met with local, sister institutions to information share, but also benefited from the entire ATD network of schools, learning from institutions located as far as Washington State and even New Zealand! The HCC team was also able to meet with our Leadership and Data Coaches to continue dialogue about our data story and emerging themes that will be an integral part of the Strategic Plan. Information, perspectives, and ideas gained during this experience will be infused into the work of the Core and Data Teams this spring semester and we look forward to hearing more from attendees about what they learned!
Concurrent with our strategic planning process, the College was working to address gaps in achievement for students of color and low-income students. Through this work, we identified four emerging themes related to student success; these themes have been integrated into our 2020-2024 strategic plan. We acknowledge that the landscape of higher education is changing rapidly, and have resolved not only to adapt to those changes, but to meet them head-on.
Dr. Jacqueline Jackson
Interim Vice President for Student Affairs and Institutional Effectiveness
firstname.lastname@example.org | 443-412-2149
Elizabeth A. Mosser
Associate Dean for Academic Operations &
Co-chair, Strategic Plan Oversight Committee
email@example.com | 443-412-2319
Patrick S. Elliott, Ed.D.
Associate Vice President for Enrollment Management &
Co-chair, Strategic Plan Oversight Committee
firstname.lastname@example.org | 443-412-2345
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Harford Community College
401 Thomas Run Road
Bel Air, MD 21015-1627
Online | 443-412-2272
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