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September 2009
What's Happening
at IHELP

IHELP Presents at Campaign for College Opportunity Regional Briefing – The Campaign for College Opportunity is hosting a series of regional briefings in California focused on issues specific to higher education in the state. Their first briefing, co-sponsored by the Silicon Valley Leadership Group, centered on the findings of two reports: IHELP’s “Technical Difficulties: Meeting California’s Workforce Needs in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math Fields,” and the Public Policy Institute of California’s “Closing the Gap: Meeting California’s Need for College Graduates.”  IHELP Executive Director Nancy Shulock and PPIC Associate Director and Senior Fellow Hans Johnson presented their findings at the briefing. For more information on this event, view the event press release and Nancy's presentation. Stay tuned for more information on future briefings.

New IHELP Faculty Associate – IHELP is pleased to announce the addition of its newest faculty associate, Dr. Su Jin Jez. Su Jin is an assistant professor of public policy and administration and associate director of the education doctorate program at Sacramento State University. Prior to her appointment, Su Jin served as research associate for WestEd. Throughout her career, Su Jin has focused on the issues of college readiness, access and success, and recently released a report titled, “Developing a College-Going Culture in a Middle School: A Toolkit” for the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation. Currently, Su Jin is working on several projects including a study on the impact of wealth and race on college choice, access and success and a study for the Hewlett Foundation on assessment and placement policies at California Community Colleges. For more on Su Jin and her work, read her curriculum vitae.


IPEDS Report Cover
New This Month

Community College Student Outcomes: Limitations of the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) and Recommendations for Improvement

IHELP’s report on IPEDS analyzes the value and effectiveness of the federal data system for understanding student outcomes in community colleges. The report discusses the system’s shortcomings such as the limitation of the graduation rate data to full-time students, the difficulty in discerning student intent in order to report on the appropriate outcomes, and the limitations for using the data to make comparisons across colleges. Recommendations are made for improving the data collected and for better use of the data.
View the Report


Student Progress Toward Degree Completion: Lessons from the Literature

IHELP’s latest report reviews the research literature on student success to identify intermediate outcomes, sometimes called “milestones,” along the college pathway that give students momentum toward degree completion. It points to academic behaviors and patterns that have been found to predict student progress and success that can, therefore, be tracked to identify where and why student progress stalls and how changes to policies and practices might increase degree completion. The report was prepared as background for upcoming reports on milestone achievement among community college and university students.


In Case You Missed It - Creating a Student-Centered Transfer Process in California: Lessons from Other States

IHELP’s latest study tackles the difficult challenge of making transfer more comprehensible and less frustrating for California’s community college students.  The study examines transfer policies of eight states, identifies some key dimensions of emerging policies, and offers recommendations for more student-centered transfer policies that would increase transfer success and lead to more college educated Californians.
View the Report


Spotlight On

The Student Financial Aid and Fiscal Responsibility Act of 2009 (HR 3221), passed by the House of Representatives and pending in the Senate, would provide the opportunity for states to compete for funding to increase college completion. The legislation includes The College Access and Completion Fund – grants to states to promote innovation in policies and practices to increase student success and completion – and the American Graduation Initiative – competitive grants to two-year institutions to increase rates of graduation and transfer to universities, especially among low-income, non-traditional students. Total funding for the initiative in the House bill is $730 million per year for 2010 through 2013 and $680 million for 2014 through 2019. The Campaign for College Opportunity and the Hewlett, Irvine, and College Access foundations hosted a meeting in San Francisco on September 15 to discuss how California can position itself competitively for these fund ing opportunities. One obstacle is the lack of an obvious office or entity to lead the effort to apply for and manage a multi-year initiative in California. A background paper distributed for the meeting describes the funding opportunity as well as the challenge.

Sacramento State Institute For Higher Education Leadership & Policy

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