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August 2011
What's Happening

IHELP Awarded California Education Policy Fund Grant – IHELP is one of nine organizations awarded a new three-year general operating grant from the Hewlett Foundation’s California Education Policy Fund to advance reform efforts and boost student success in California. The Fund’s goal is to enhance reform efforts of various organizations and develop a network of organizations that can collectively engage a broad array of stakeholders. Click here to view the press release.

IHELP Presents at SHEEO Conference – IHELP Director Nancy Shulock was invited to speak at the 2011 State Higher Education Executive Officers (SHEEO) Higher Education Policy Conference on August 9-11 in San Francisco. Nancy, along with Jane Wellman of the Delta Project on Postsecondary Education Costs, Productivity, and Accountability, gave a presentation on higher education finance. Nancy’s portion addressed the potential role of performance-based funding in state finance policy. Click here to view the presentation.  

California Competes Council Project - IHELP Faculty Associate Su Jin Jez attended her first meeting as a consultant for the California Competes Council on August 3 in San Francisco. Su Jin is providing comprehensive data and analysis to support the Council’s efforts to set goals and policies to improve California higher education. Click here for more information on the Council.

Jobs for the Future project - Building on its ongoing career-technical education (CTE) research agenda, IHELP has partnered with Jobs for the Future (JFF) to analyze data from Florida and New York to learn about patterns of student enrollment and success in high-value CTE programs.

Features This Month

Sense of Direction: The Importance of Helping Community College Students Select and Enter a Program of Study

IHELP’s newest report examines the importance of declaring and entering an academic program of study for community college student success and completion. Researchers studied an entering cohort of more than 430,000 community college students and followed their progress over a six-year period through programs of study to completion of a certificate, associate degree or transfer to a university. The study used student course patterns to identify those who entered a program of study in 21 program areas across the liberal arts and sciences and career technical education. Researchers found that entering a program of study is an important milestone on the path to college completion that only half of entering community colleges students reach, and that students who enter a program of study in their first year are twice as likely to complete a certificate, degree, or transfer as those who enter a program of study in the second year or later.

View the report

In case you missed it - Consequences of Neglect: Performance Trends in California Higher Education

This IHELP report uses national data to take an in-depth look at California higher education performance in relation to other states and within the state by region and by race/ethnicity. Researchers analyzed California’s postsecondary performance in the categories of preparation, participation, affordability, completion, benefits, and finance, and found that the state’s performance is average, at best, and trending downward. This report is the fourth in a series of reports previously titled The Grades are In, which followed the publication of the National Center for Public Policy and Higher Education’s bi-annual Measuring Up reports that graded the 50 states on their higher education performance.

View the report

Spotlight On

Accelerating Opportunity - Jobs for the Future (JFF) recently announced the launch of the four-year community college initiative, Accelerating Opportunity: A Breaking Through Initiative. This initiative aims to change the way adult education is structured, funded, and delivered through strategic policy and program changes at the state and institutional level in order to create more successful and effective pathways to credentials, certificates and degrees. Eleven states have been selected to participate in this program and have been awarded grant monies to redesign their adult basic education and postsecondary programs to integrate basic skills with practical, occupational training. Such efforts are in stark contrast to the lack of state policy attention being given to adult education in California, where responsibility for adult education is shared by K-12 and the community colleges with no clear accountability for funding or outcomes.  This initiative is a partnership of JFF, the Washington State Board of Community & Technical Colleges, the National Council for Workforce Education, and the National College Transition Network. For more information on this initiative, click here.

Sacramento State Institute For Higher Education Leadership & Policy

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