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Topic: Access to higher education

Past Event
June 10, 2024

Colleges and Universities Working to Improve the Student Academic Experience and Outcomes

2024 Opportunity Institute

The 2024 Opportunity Institute is hosted by Georgetown University and Penn State, in collaboration with the American Talent Initiative. This annual three-day Institute brings together colleges and universities nationwide to engage in dynamic discussions and spur strategic initiatives that identify and mitigate key barriers to student success. Participants will have an opportunity to attend workshops, provocations, and office hours with experts; work with their teams to advance institution-specific equity projects’ and connect with colleagues from a wide range of institutions…
Blog Post
May 15, 2024

Restoring Trust in Higher Education Requires Colleges and Universities Being Trustworthy

As numerous surveys make clear, America’s trust in higher education institutions continues to decline, a sentiment that is coming from all political directions. The chaos on college campuses across the country in response to pro-Palestinian encampments, leading to conflict with police, student and faculty arrests, and canceled commencements, will further erode the public’s support. These events have highlighted the tensions on campuses between commitments to free speech and the right to peaceful protest and policies protecting against harassment and…
Blog Post
May 9, 2024

From Debt to Degrees

Evaluating the Ohio College Comeback Compact

Across the US, the number of individuals who started college but stopped out before attaining a degree has continued to grow. Research shows that earning an associate’s degree, bachelor’s degree, or a targeted credential has wide-ranging benefits, from increased lifetime earnings to improved health outcomes. Postsecondary institutions and regional economies also benefit when students re-enroll and complete programs. Returning students face unique challenges to re-enrollment and completion, and this is especially true for students with past-due balances at their…
Research Report
May 9, 2024

Removing the Institutional Debt Hurdle

Findings from an Evaluation of the Ohio College Comeback Compact

This report provides findings from the evaluation of the pilot year of the Ohio College Comeback Compact, an institutional debt cancellation program being implemented at eight public institutions in northeast Ohio. Administrative holds preventing re-enrollment leave students unable to realize the benefits of a postsecondary credential. Fortunately, a number of initiatives and policies, including the Ohio College Comeback Compact, have sought to alleviate this barrier for students.
Research Report
May 9, 2024

Second Chances

A Qualitative Assessment of the Ohio College Comeback Compact

While the rise of institution-specific debt forgiveness programs and state-level policies limiting transcript withholding is encouraging, a regional or national approach could benefit returning students on a wider scale. In response, Ithaka S+R developed a regional solution, the Ohio College Comeback Compact, which launched in August 2022, to address the problems posed by institutional debts and provide stopped-out students with an opportunity to complete their credential and have their debt forgiven.
Upcoming Event
June 24, 2024

Benefits of Summer Engagement and Transition Support for Incoming First-Year Students

Insights From the Kessler Scholars Program

First-generation students often enter college with limited knowledge of that environment. Targeted summer programs that introduce campus resources, build community, and prepare these students for college can foster belonging and ease the college transition. In this session at NASPA’s 2024 First-Generation Student Success Conference, staff at Bates College and the University of Dayton will share their experiences of implementing summer programs for Kessler Scholars, and leaders from Ithaka S+R and the Kessler Scholars Collaborative will share the benefits of…
Past Event
June 12, 2024

Adult Re-Engagement with FAFSA and Higher Education

As the population of adults with some college but no credential (SCNC) continues to increase, institutions are turning their attention toward reengaging and reenrolling this key segment of the market. Expanding access for adult learners is vital to meeting enrollment goals and also key to meeting workforce needs and equipping adult learners with SCNC with the skills and credentials necessary for the most in-demand and rewarding jobs. While some challenges to returning are well-known—family obligations, work requirements, stranded credits—sometimes, a…
Past Event
May 15, 2024

Bipartisan Policy Center Higher Education Virtual Roundtable on Emergency Aid Programs and SEOG

The Bipartisan Policy Center has recommended allowing colleges and universities to repurpose a portion of SEOG funds to provide micro-grants to students who have experienced a financial shock. BPC has begun a new project focused on advancing its recommendation and building bipartisan support for providing institutions with flexibility to use SEOG funds for emergency aid. In this initial roundtable, BPC is bringing together experts and stakeholders, including Ithaka S+R’s Danny Rossman, to share perspectives on emergency aid programs, the effectiveness…
Blog Post
April 25, 2024

Removing Barriers to Re-Enrollment for Adult Learners

Announcing A New Technical Assistance Project in Kentucky

In collaboration with the Kentucky Council for Postsecondary Education (CPE), Ithaka S+R is providing research and consulting to identify barriers to re-enrolling adult learners who have stopped out and assess intervention opportunities to improve adult learner re-enrollment in Kentucky. This project builds on Ithaka S+R’s prior research, implementation, and evaluation efforts to address stranded credits—credits that students have earned but cannot access because of administrative holds placed by the college or university they previously attended as collateral…
Issue Brief
April 18, 2024

Serving Library Patrons Behind Bars

Challenges and Collaborations

Introduction The past several years have seen major shifts in both policy and perception regarding criminal justice in the United States. The distinctly American phenomenon of mass incarceration and its racial and economic underpinnings have made criminal justice reform a major focus of advocacy efforts and a rare example of bipartisan agreement. As a growing quantity of research has begun to illuminate the negative societal impacts of the carceral system, especially on communities of color, focus has slowly shifted to…
Past Event
May 1, 2024

Adult Learner Re-Engagement in Pennsylvania

Informational Webinar with PDE and Ithaka S+R

On Wednesday May 1 at 11:00am-12:00pm ET, join the Pennsylvania Department of Education and Ithaka S+R for a webinar providing practical information on how higher education institutions in Pennsylvania can better support adult learners. By working with students to resolve past due balances and administrative holds, institutions are able to enroll students who were previously blocked from returning to college. Register to attend by Friday, April 19 to learn about strategies to engage, enroll, and support adult…
Past Event
May 21, 2024

Providing Credit Transfer Visibility to Improve Credit Mobility

In DXtera Institute’s April Tuesday Session, Ithaka S+R’s Emily Tichenor and Andromeda Yelton from JSTOR Labs will discuss their Universal Transfer Explorer project, a new, public, non-profit, national credit mobility website that will help address the many challenges college students face when they move between institutions or attempt to transfer credits they earned in high school or elsewhere. This “universal credit transfer explorer” will go live later this year with data from an inaugural set of institutions across three states.
Past Event
April 12, 2024

Universal Transfer Explorer Pilot

At the Washington Intercollege Relations Commission Spring 2024 Meeting/Conference, Ithaka S+R’s Emily Tichenor will join Alex Tadio (Washington State University), David Berner (Shoreline Community College), and Abby Chien (Washington Student Achievement Council) in a session providing an overview of the universal transfer explorer pilot project. The session will take place on Friday, April 12 at 12pm EST. Learn more.
Blog Post
April 3, 2024

Navigating Two Systems

New Report on Censorship and Self-Censorship in Higher Education in Prison Programs

Today we’re publishing Between Two Systems: Navigating Censorship and Self-Censorship in Higher Education in Prisons. Based on interviews with students and educators, this is the third report in a series made possible by Ascendium Education Group focusing on the intersection of technology, surveillance, and censorship in higher education in prisons.
Research Report
April 3, 2024

Between Two Systems

Navigating Censorship and Self-Censorship in Higher Education in Prisons

Building on our previous research on the ways that media review directives and censorship policies may limit or protect student access to intellectual and education material, as well as on the technology students on the inside can access for educational purposes, this report explores how educators in higher education in prison programs navigate censorship and self-censorship and how the relationship between educational programs and departments of corrections may have an impact on the educational experience and learning outcomes of students.
Past Event
April 11, 2024

CUNY Transfer Explorer

Making Smart Transfer Decisions

This session will provide a refresher on the widely used CUNY Transfer Explorer. Additionally, we will take a deep dive into introducing some of the newest features as well as engage in a discussion surrounding an upcoming expansion called “CUNY K-16 Gateway.” Attendees will leave the session more fully understanding how CUNY Transfer Explorer can help their students navigate the transfer credit process. Join Pooja Patel and Christopher Buonocore on April 11 at the CUNY Graduate Center to learn…
Past Event
April 2, 2024

The Evolution of T-Rex

Transfer Tuesday with the Business and Technical Teams

You may be familiar with the core functionality of CUNY Transfer Explorer, but how about some of the newer features and enhancements that have been made? How about our goals for this upcoming year? Did you know that CUNY will be joining the “Universal Transfer Explorer” model? In a virtual presentation on April 2, learn from the business and technical team, including Ithaka S+R’s Pooja Patel and Chris Buonocore, Kara Heffernan, and Deira Pereya. You will also have an…
Past Event
March 19, 2024

Promoting Belonging

Evaluating Holistic Supports for First-Generation College Students

Over one-third of college students today identify as first-generation students. To better understand how to support success for this growing population of students, this study explores whether participation in a comprehensive student support program influences levels of belonging and mattering and examines whether these outcomes are related to institutional satisfaction. On Tuesday, March 19, 2024, at 3:45 PM-4:45, join Ithaka S+R’s Ifeatu Oliobi and the Kessler Scholars Collaborative’s Kristen Glasener for a paper presentation on holistic supports for first-generation college…
Past Event
March 12, 2024

Sharpening the Social-Mobility Mission

In a virtual forum hosted by The Chronicle of Higher Education with support from Ascendium, higher education experts will explore the connection between college degrees and social mobility, covering topics including college rankings and classifications, post-graduate outcomes, and strategies to ensure success for low-income students. The session will be hosted by Eric Kelderman, with panelists Elizabeth Davidson Pisacreta, Akil Bellow, Mary Dana Hinton, and Ellen J. Nuefledt. Register to join the forum on Tuesday, March 12 at 2pm ET.
Upcoming Event
September 8, 2024

Why Is College So Expensive and What Can We Do About It?

It’s no secret that higher education costs have skyrocketed in recent years presenting serious challenges for students, families, and policymakers alike. This presentation at the Council for Opportunity in Education’s TRIO Turns 60 Annual Conference will delve into the intricate factors propelling the high cost of higher education, offering insights into the underlying dynamics shaping the landscape. Attendees will gain a deeper understanding of key drivers such as administrative bloat, declining state funding, and the proliferation of non-academic services.