League for Innovation Leads Faculty Voices Initiative to Engage Community College Faculty in National Completion Conversation

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Missing voices in the national community college Completion Agenda conversation will be heard as part of a new initiative led by the League for Innovation in the Community College.

Project focuses on use of effective practices in student learning and retention.

Missing voices in the national community college Completion Agenda conversation will be heard as part of a new initiative led by the League for Innovation in the Community College (League).

Through the Faculty Voices Initiative, the League seeks to engage community college faculty in the Completion conversation with two aims. One is to identify, codify, and report issues and concerns faculty have regarding the national focus on student retention and completion.
The second aim is to increase individual and institutional implementation of technology-enabled personalized learning (TEPL) tools and strategies that have proven effective in promoting student learning, retention, and completion. TEPL involves not only teaching and learning, but also the integration of planning, advising, and the student experience.

Numerous projects and initiatives have been launched to develop strategies and tools to improve student learning, retention, and completion. The Faculty Voices Initiative seeks to connect community college faculty, both full and part time, with these resources as part of the Completion Agenda conversation.

League President and CEO Gerardo E. de los Santos pointed out that, “In today’s competitive global economy, a well-educated population is critical to the economic vitality and stability of our nation, and numerous reports and declarations emphasize that a postsecondary credential is increasingly necessary to earn a family wage in this country. In the American Graduation Initiative, President Obama called for a 50 percent increase in student completion rates at community colleges over the next decade. Now at the near-halfway point, we’ll need to make a real push to achieve this goal.”

The four-year project, supported by a grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, will use a phased approach of research, engagement and learning, and empowerment and dissemination.

Public Agenda (http://www.publicagenda.org), a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization, has contracted with the League to provide training and technical assistance on the project.

"Any meaningful and lasting success in higher education reform will require the knowledge, expertise and commitment of faculty," said Alison Kadlec, senior vice president and director of public engagement at Public Agenda. "Ignoring faculty insight would be – and has been – a mistake. Public Agenda is thrilled to be part of this important effort to bring faculty voices to the forefront."

The Completion Agenda stems from the American Graduation Initiative proposed in 2009 by President Obama and quickly embraced by chief executives of major community college associations. A leading movement in higher education, the Completion Agenda is supported by policy makers at the highest levels of government as well as major foundations and national organizations.

About the League for Innovation in the Community College
The League for Innovation in the Community College is an international, nonprofit organization dedicated to catalyzing the community college movement. The League hosts conferences and institutes, develops web resources, conducts research, produces publications, provides services, and leads projects and initiatives with more than 800 member colleges, 160 corporate partners, and a host of other government and nonprofit agencies in a continuing effort to make a positive difference for students and communities. Information about the League and its activities is available at http://www.league.org, on Facebook at facebook.com/LeagueforInnovation, and on Twitter at @FollowtheLeague.

About Public Agenda
Public Agenda is a nonprofit organization that helps diverse leaders and citizens navigate divisive, complex issues. Through nonpartisan research and engagement, it provides people with the insights and support they need to arrive at workable solutions on critical issues, regardless of their differences. Since 1975, Public Agenda has helped foster progress on higher education affordability, achievement gaps, community college completion, use of technology and innovation, and other higher education issues. Find Public Agenda online at http://PublicAgenda.org, on Facebook at facebook.com/PublicAgenda and on Twitter at @PublicAgenda.

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