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.

Purpose of the Core Team
As part of Lane’s efforts to support student success and close achievement gaps, the Core Team’s overarching purpose is to foster a culture of evidence and sound decision-making leading to systemic institutional change.

Core Team Membership
To achieve these goals, a model for ATD work at the college was newly developed with the purpose of engaging participation across divisions and departments. A Core Team made up of faculty and staff from key areas has been formed to facilitate and evaluate the process of effectively scaling up high impact student success work.

The first step in forming the Core Team was to identify key areas for student success work including Writing, Math, Developmental Education, IRAP, and Student Affairs. Once these were designated, the next step was to identify individuals within these areas who have experience with student success work and a broad vision for its future at Lane. Currently, the Core Team is made up of members from each of these areas, and across all employee groups.

Aliscia Niles, Co-Chair, Facuty in Adult Basic and Secondary Education
Jennifer Frei, Co-Chair, Executive Dean, School of Arts and Sciences
Casey Reid, Faculty and Writing Center Coordinator
Jessica Knoch, Faculty in Math
Ben Hill, Retired Faculty in Math
Cathy Thomas, Institutional Researcher
Tammy Walters, Student Advisor for First Year Experience
Lida Herburger, Dean of Student Success

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