Aspen Institute Names ZogoTech Client as a Finalist for Prestigious Prize

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Southwest Texas Junior College is one of top ten community colleges

ZogoTech, a leading provider of analytic reporting solutions for higher education, announced that Southwest Texas Junior College (SWTJC) has been named by the Aspen Institute as one of the top ten community colleges in the country for creating successful models that improve student outcomes. These ten finalists are now in the running to receive the first-ever $1 million Aspen Prize Fund.

The Aspen Prize, initiated through the Aspen Institute’s College Excellence Program, targets a new generation of college leaders in order to improve colleges’ ability to teach and graduate students, especially low-income and minority students on campuses across the United States. As the first national recognition of the extraordinary accomplishments at individual community colleges, this prize calls attention to the vital priority of raising completion rates nationwide.

“The Aspen Institute asked us to provide extensive data; it was chart after chart of data, most of which we were only able to supply because of ZogoTech,” says Dr. Blaine Bennett, Dean of Institutional Advancement and Technology. “By talking to various communities within our institution, such as the faculty and the board, they were able to see that we’re using data for decision making has become a central part of our culture.”

Over the last five years, SWTJC has markedly improved the rate at which students finish their degrees and certificates, implementing new programs along the way to improve students’ education and ensure they graduate. During this time, ZogoTech has worked with SWTJC to create a business intelligence and data warehousing solution that enables the college to quickly pull reports, correlate information to strategic goals, and track student performance for specific cohorts. This comprehensive access to data has allowed the college to make great strides in improving overall institutional performance.

“It feels great to be recognized,” says Bennett. “We are a small, rural college and we are in the company of colleges like Miami Dade, the largest institution of higher education in the country. Using data and working with ZogoTech helped us level that playing field. We don’t have a large staff to do research on how we’re performing, but our college has the capacity to get that data because of ZogoTech software.”

“SWTJC is a higher education institution that lives by the values of the Aspen Institute by making informed decisions that increase both educational quality and completion rates,” says Michael Taft, President and CEO of ZogoTech. “Their widespread adoption of using data for decision making will continue to advance the standing of both the college itself and the students it graduates.”

The grand prize winner of the Aspen Prize, along with the runners-up, will be announced in Washington D.C. later this month. “We are already proud of this accomplishment, regardless of whether we win or not,” says Bennett. “To be selected as one of the top ten colleges in the nation is already a great honor, especially since it relates to how we have made our campuses so data-centric.”

About ZogoTech
The aims of ZogoTech are nothing short of revolutionizing the way that educators and administrators use technology. ZogoTech's Institutional Intelligence software has been built through partnerships with institutions of higher education to deliver a solution that precisely answers the data needs of executives, institutional researchers,faculty and student services personnel. ZogoTech brings an in-depth knowledge of higher education, superior customer support, and software solutions highly-acclaimed for their usability. See http://zogotech.com for more information.

About SWTJC
Southwest Texas Junior College is a comprehensive, public, two-year college serving an 11-county area that stretches from the Texas Hill Country to the US-Mexican border. Our main campus is located in Uvalde, a city of 15,000 located in the foothills of Texas Hill Country. Uvalde is approximately 70 miles west of San Antonio and 70 miles east of the Mexican border. Additional campuses are located in the border cities of Del Rio and Eagle Pass. SWTJC also provides online instruction and distance education links to twenty-two school districts. No other state community college provides educational resources in an area this large. College programs and services provide accessible, affordable, high-quality post-secondary education that prepares students to: 1) enter the job market, 2) transfer to senior colleges and universities, 3) pursue their professional and personal goals. Through its programs and services, the college equitably provides higher education opportunities and supports the economic growth of the community.

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Eleanor Hooker

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