INDIANAPOLIS (August 23, 2016) — Ivy Tech Community College, the nation’s largest singly accredited statewide community college system, today announced that it has expanded its student success coaching partnership with InsideTrack, building on years of sustained improvement in student outcomes. The Ivy Tech coaching program originally focused only on students in Indiana’s 21st Century Scholars program, which offers scholarships to qualified low-income, first-generation students. The community college system is now expanding coaching to include all first-time African American students to help address historic achievement gaps and support the transition to college.
In the inaugural 2014-2015 academic year, the Ivy Tech coaching program led to an increase in first-year Scholar persistence at the 32 Ivy Tech Community College campuses of 8.8 percentage points, from a historical average of 36.9 percent to 45.7 percent. The program is on track to show similar gains for the 2015-2016 academic year. In addition, the program has deepened administrator, staff and faculty understanding of the student experience.
By working with coaches to set long-term goals and map out success strategies, students are better able to balance their academic work with personal, professional, and financial commitments. After serving approximately 2500 students over the first two years, the program will serve an additional 1,700 students this fall.
“Educational equity is about more than access,” said Rachel Boon, Assistant Vice President for Student Success at Ivy Tech. “It’s about leveraging evidence-based approaches to ensure that all students succeed, regardless of their background. Expanding our partnership with InsideTrack is about scaling something that we know works, for our students and for us.”
Through the program, student can engage in one-on-one meetings, email and text communication with professional InsideTrack coaches, as well as access self-guided content through InsideTrack’s uCoach® web and mobile platform. In addition to providing on-demand access to educational videos and other interactive materials, the platform also generates insights on student engagement and performance to inform administrative decision-making and help institutional leaders continue to improve the student experience.
The unique combination of coaching expertise, methodology, analytics and technology also makes the program cost-effective, a critical factor for Ivy Tech CFO, Chris Ruhl. “Allocating scarce resources effectively is critical as a public open access institution,” he notes. “The data from our partnership with InsideTrack clearly show that we are investing our money wisely and achieving outcomes that are central to our mission.”
“It’s clear that Ivy Tech is committed to closing achievement gaps and giving all students the opportunity to benefit fully from the transformational power of higher education,” said Jessica Hector, Associate Vice President of Client Partnerships at InsideTrack. “We applaud Ivy Tech for its commitment to student success and are honored to be partnering with them in this critical effort.”
Ivy Tech’s coaching program began as part of the statewide 21st Century Scholars Coaching Initiative, led by the Indiana Commission for Higher Education with funding from USA Funds. In addition to Ivy Tech, the initiative also helped launch coaching programs at Indiana State University, Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis, Indiana University East and Indiana University Kokomo. Coaching continues at all of these institutions and results have been positive across the board.
About Ivy Tech Community College
Ivy Tech Community College is the state’s largest public postsecondary institution and the nation’s largest singly accredited statewide community college system. Ivy Tech has campuses throughout Indiana. It serves as the state’s engine of workforce development, offering affordable degree programs and training that are aligned with the needs of its community along with courses and programs that transfer to other colleges and universities in Indiana. It is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and a member of the North Central Association.
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