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Bay Mills Community College joins Achieving the Dream Network

July 12, 2017

BAY MILLS — Bay Mills Community College has joined Achieving the Dream, a network of more than 220 colleges in 39 states dedicated to improving student success.  As a network institution, BMCC will innovate to implement, align, and scale cutting edge reforms, work with ATD coaches to build institutional capacity and connect with peers to foster learning and share information.


“Bay Mills Community College is excited to be part of this network of community colleges working together to build institutional capacity to better serve our students in the Eastern Upper Peninsula of Michigan and from across the country in our online learning environment,” said Michael C. Parish, BMCC president.  


“The strength of local and regional economies, our ability to rebuild the middle class, and the possibility that a new generation will achieve their goals depends on community colleges,” said Dr. Karen A. Stout, president and CEO of Achieving the Dream. “Colleges that join the ATD Network show an exceptional commitment to becoming the kind of institution that will lead the nation into the future.”


ATD offers a capacity-building framework and companion self-assessment that allow colleges to pinpoint strengths and areas for improvement across seven institutional capacities in areas such as leadership and vision, teaching and learning, and data and technology.  With the capacity framework as a guide, ATD’s approach integrates and aligns existing college success efforts and offers valuable support in preparing for accreditation, fostering conversation about goals, and making bold, holistic institution-wide changes because initiatives that don’t reach most of a college’s student body have not shown strong results.


A team from Bay Mills Community College and teams from the other colleges now joining ATD met in April to prepare to launch their ATD work, which will focus on initiatives such as the ICAT survey; which was designed to identify areas of strengths and weaknesses to assist us in making institutional improvements; and SENSE and CCSSE surveys designed to identify student perceptions of our processes and their overall college experience.  In addition, Bay Mills Community College will be offering our students the opportunity to participate in paid internships as well as have the funds necessary to provide emergency assistance to those students who would otherwise be forced to drop out of college.   


ATD Network colleges report data using metrics that answer critical questions about who attends college, who succeeds in and after college and how college is financed. To advance goals of social mobility and equity, the metrics provide information on how low income and other underserved students fare. These metrics are categorized into performance metrics, efficiency metrics and equity metrics at points during the student experience from access through post-college outcomes.


As colleges in the new cohort progress, they may apply to participate in initiatives supported by philanthropic funding and managed by ATD. These initiatives help incubate new ideas that help colleges refine practices based on evidence of what works and allow ATD to disseminate knowledge to the broader network and the field.  New initiatives address the challenge of engaging adjunct faculty more deeply as key members of colleges’ workforces and implementing degree programs using only open educational resources.

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