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 gateways to good jobs for millions of students who dream of a better tomorrow. Yet too often these dreams are cut short.
Achieving the Dream (ATD), the national, nonprofit leader in championing evidence-based institutional improvement, was conceived as an initiative in 2004 by Lumina Foundation and seven founding partner organizations, Achieving the Dream now leads the most comprehensive non-governmental reform movement for student success in higher education history.
Lane joined the ATD network in 2011 and was named a Leader College in September 2014.
To gain Leader College distinction, colleges must demonstrate commitment to and progress on the four Achieving the Dream principles:
- Committed leadership
- Use of evidence to improve programs and services,
- Broad engagement, and
- Systemic institutional improvement.
They must also show three years of sustained improvement of student success on at least one of the following measures of performance:
- Completion of certificates or degrees
- Term-to-term and year-to-year retention
- Completion of college-level math and English courses
- Advancement from developmental to credit-bearing courses
- Course completion with a C or better
Additionally, each Leader College has successfully implemented at least one student success intervention or initiative that is advancing student outcomes that are of sufficient scale to benefit a substantial proportion of students. Leader College institutions have met high standards of practice and performance and Achieving the Dream expects these colleges to serve as mentors within the Achieving the Dream community of learners