MERLOT Community College Summit Story


Michelle Pacansky-Brock

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Community Colleges - Building Student Success

Community colleges play a major role in improving the social mobility of Americans and meeting the changing needs of the workforce. With a commitment to open access and a mission that supports 2-year associate degrees, transfer pathways to 4-year universities, and certificate programs, community colleges serve as the gateway to higher education and career advancement for roughly six million students each year.

As online and hybrid course enrollments continue to increase access to community college for underrepresented student populations, they are also exacerbating equity gaps. Access alone is not a pathway to serving all students equitably. And while institutions have quantifiable equations to measure success, these formulas do not reflect the nuances and complexity of success as defined by our own students.

This April 3, community college educators will convene at the 2019 OLC Innovate Community College Summit. With a student-centered focus, the Summit is designed to encourage deep reflection, dialogue, and collaboration as we collectively explore the role of online learning in social mobility. How might we re-imagine our traditional notions of access and success to create new opportunities to best serve the needs of all students? 

Our day together will begin with an inspirational message from Sara Goldrick-Rab, founder of the Hope Center for College, Community and Justice, and will be followed by two panel discussions representing diverse community college perspectives and interactive breakout sessions. We hope you’ll join us for this important event to learn and grow as educators and connect in community with our peers.

Learn more about the OLC Innovate 2019 Community College Summit.

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