Lone Star College System recognized as leader in the national student completion movement

Published on: November 14, 2012

HOUSTON (Nov. 14 , 2012) – Lone Star College System was recognized as a leader in the national student completion movement by Achieving the Dream (AtD), a national nonprofit leading the nation’s most comprehensive non-governmental reform network for community college student success and completion.

LSCS, one of 14 institutions designated as a 2012 Leader College, was recognized for demonstrating sustained improvement and accomplishments on key student achievement indicators, including student persistence and completion.

“This is a great achievement for Lone Star College System to be recognized as a Leader College, especially since the selection is so closely aligned with our Number 1 goal of student success and completion,” said Dr. Richard Carpenter, LSCS chancellor.

“This recognition validates the hard work that has been taking place at Lone Star College System and serves as proof that our concentrated efforts to help more students finish their education and reach their goals are paying off,” Dr. Carpenter said.

“I’m particularly proud of the progress we have made in our student persistence rates, especially improving the persistence rates of our Black and Hispanic students,” said Dr. Carpenter.

Persistence rates of all student categories increased at LSCS from 2006-2011, noted AtD. During this time period, student persistence rate for Black students at LSCS increased from 64 percent to 72 percent, and for Hispanic students, it went from 69 percent to 73 percent. Persistence rate for  White students at LSCS also increased, from 67 percent to 69 percent.

Leader Colleges are demonstrating the power of the Achieving the Dream Student-Centered Model of Institutional Improvement by raising persistence and graduation rates and closing achievement gaps.

Each college approaches the work differently, but with the guidance of the model and AtD coaches, colleges implement data-informed programs and policies that build long-term, institution-wide commitment to student success. Examples include: college readiness programs, mandatory new student orientation, student success courses, developmental course redesign, curriculum redesign, and intensive and individualized advising.

“We are proud of Lone Star College System for earning this respected distinction,” said Rachel Singer, AtD vice president for community college relations and applied research. “Lone Star College has raised the bar on promising practices that will impact policies to help more students succeed. The college deserves recognition for its dedication to the student success movement.”

In order to be eligible for Leader College distinction, colleges must demonstrate commitment to and progress on the principles and values of AtD: committed leadership, use of evidence to improve programs and services, broad engagement, and systemic institutional improvement all guided by a student-centered vision focused on equity and excellence. Additionally, each Leader College has successfully implemented at least one student success intervention that is advancing student outcomes.

In addition to LSCS, the new Leader Colleges are: Bay de Noc College, Escanaba, MI; Central Piedmont Community College, Charlotte, NC; Community College of Baltimore County, Baltimore; College of the Ouachitas, Malvern, AR; Davidson County Community College, Thomasville, NC; Elgin Community College, Elgin, IL; Greenville Technical College, Greenville, SC;  National Park Community College, Hot Springs, AR; Springfield Technical Community College, Springfield, MA; Temple College, Temple, TX; Texarkana College, Texarkana, TX; Trident Technical College, North Charleston, SC; and University of Hawai’i Community Colleges, Honolulu.

These colleges have identified workable solutions to issues such as enhancing the experience of first-year students, improving developmental education, closing achievement gaps, strengthening academic and personal advising for students in need of additional support, strengthening links to high schools and four-year institutions to strengthen student preparation and advancement, and increasing retention, persistence rates, and the number of certificate and degree recipients. To learn more about Leader Colleges, visit www.achievingthedream.org/get_involved/leader_colleges.

Achieving the Dream, Inc.
Achieving the Dream, Inc. is a national nonprofit that is dedicated to helping more community college students, particularly low-income students and students of color, stay in school and earn a college certificate or degree. Evidence-based, student-centered, and built on the values of equity and excellence, Achieving the Dream is closing achievement gaps and accelerating student success nationwide by: 1) guiding evidence-based institutional improvement, 2) leading policy change, 3) generating knowledge, and 4) engaging the public. Conceived as an initiative in 2004 by Lumina Foundation and seven founding partner organizations, today, Achieving the Dream is leading the most comprehensive non-governmental reform network for student success and completion in higher education history. With nearly 200 colleges, more than 100 coaches and advisors, and 15 state policy teams - working throughout 32 states and the District of Columbia – the Achieving the Dream National Reform Network helps 3.75 million community college students have a better chance of realizing greater economic opportunity and achieving their dreams. To learn more, visit file:///C:/Users/llewis/Downloads/www.AchievingtheDream.org.

Lone Star College System
With 78,000 students in credit classes, and a total enrollment of more than 90,000, Lone Star College System is the largest institution of higher education in the Houston area and the fastest-growing community college system in the nation. Dr. Richard Carpenter is the chancellor of LSCS, which consists of six colleges including LSC-CyFair, LSC-Kingwood, LSC-Montgomery, LSC-North Harris, LSC-Tomball and LSC-University Park, five centers, LSC-University Center at Montgomery, LSC-University Center at University Park, Lone Star Corporate College, and LSC-Online. To learn more visit LoneStar.edu.