The Cannon Courier describes findings from CCRC's January 2021 report on strategies three guided pathways colleges in Tennessee use to help adult students enter programs of study, stay on path, and enhance learning.
Community Colleges Have Lost a Lot of Students During the Pandemic. Here's How One Campus Has Kept Theirs
Los Angeles Community College credits its caring, "customer service" approach to outreach for its success in keeping students enrolled during the pandemic. CCRC Director Thomas Brock told LAist that adopting outreach strategies like LACC's could help institutions retain students and bring back those who have left.
Amid the pandemic, FAFSA applications are down 9% overall and even more among low-income students and students of color. CCRC Senior Research Scholar Elisabeth Barnett told Marketplace that pandemic-related job losses not only hurt prospective students' economic outlook but also take a mental toll that makes it harder to plan for the future and fill out a complicated form like the FAFSA.
In the wake of enrollment declines and budget woes, some states are considering consolidating their higher education systems. But CCRC Senior Research Scholar Davis Jenkins told Times Higher Education that once all the costs are accounted for, mergers don't always save states much money.
Over 60,000 Students Applied to Columbia This Year. Will the 51 Percent Spike Decrease the Achievement Gap?
After implementing a one-year test-optional policy and transitioning to virtual outreach for this year's admissions cycle, Columbia University saw a significant jump in undergraduate applications. CCRC Senior Research Scholar Davis Jenkins told The Columbia Spectator that he was concerned the diverse applicant pool would not necessarily translate to a diverse student body because of the pandemic's disproportionate effect on low-income and minoritized communities.
This Tullahoma News story describes findings from CCRC's January report on how guided pathways colleges support adult students. Motlow State in Tennessee is among the institutions that have implemented targeted supports recognizing the challenges and opportunities of adult learners.
With First Lady Jill Biden championing their cause and the free college movement gaining national attention, community colleges are in the spotlight. But the steep enrollment declines caused by COVID-19 threaten to upend the sector, which could be disastrous not just for students and faculty but also, CCRC Senior Research Scholar Davis Jenkins told The Washington Post, for democracy.
CCRC Senior Research Scholar Judith Scott-Clayton spoke to the German outlet Deutsche Welle about the significant percentage of borrowers who default on their student loans. She noted that default rates are higher among nongraduates and Black borrowers and emphasized the importance of making college more affordable to stem the student debt crisis.
This Just Equations blog post summarizes CCRC's November 2020 working paper on improving developmental and college-level mathematics. Researchers found that broad-based reforms have been insufficient in eliminating inequities in developmental placement and completion between underserved students and their more advantaged peers.
First Lady Jill Biden views affordable higher education and training programs as a key to America's economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. CCRC Director Thomas Brock told The National Interest that free college policies should not be limited to community colleges and should instead make two years of college affordable for students attending community colleges or four-year institutions, up to a reasonable limit.