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Looking for the latest developments in student success? The Course-to-Career Catchup captures them. With this article series, the EduNav team highlights the innovative thinking that inspires us as we help college and university partners meet their student success goals. On our must-read list this week: a Texas community college prepares to meet an ambitious completion goal, an economic expert drives home the fundamental weakness of higher ed, and Rhode Island takes a state-wide approach to boosting degree attainment.

Recognitions prove Amarillo College is well suited to meet its ambitious 2025 completion goals

“I’ve never worked at an institution, or participated in an accreditation visit to another school, where there were zero recommendations,” shared Amarillo College (AC) President Russell Lowery-Hart when reflecting on the College’s report from its on-site SACSCOC accreditation visit. The College, which recently entered into a partnership with EduNav to help meet its “No Excuses 2025” strategic student success goals, is no stranger to recognitions and accolades. In fact, AC has also been recognized as one of the Top 5 community colleges nationally and designated as an Aspen Institute Rising Start Institution in celebration of its clear commitment to improving student outcomes.

The cost of the federal student debt relief proposal is not the problem; Rather, it’s the number of students who do not finish the studies they fund with it, according to this economic expert

U.S. higher education may have seen an enrollment boost in recent decades, but the system still requires changes in order to be as efficient and effective as it needs to be for students. In this Council on Foreign Relations article, Steven A. Tananbaum Distinguished Fellow for International Economics Roger W. Ferguson, Jr. proposes a renewal of America by focusing on improving college completion rates. “The nation loses out as the full potential of a well-educated work force is not achieved,” states Ferguson. He then calls for students and colleges, as well as employers and federal and state government leaders, to do their parts to prioritize and implement evidence-based approaches to improving completion numbers.

Rhode Island governor takes the lead on boosting state-wide degree attainment

“We must meet Rhode Islanders where they are, and help give them the personalized, hands-on help they need to earn their credentials from our colleges and universities,” shared Governor Dan McKee in his 2022 State of the State address. As a part of the address, the Governor also announces a proposal to provide the support and wraparound services colleges and universities in his state will need to improve student outcomes. The “Rhode Island Higher Education Academy” offers similar services to those included in the Biden Administration’s federal-level “Retention and Completion Program.” Specifically, the two programs will (they have not been enacted yet) leverage evidence-based strategies like comprehensive academic advising and emergency financial aid to ensure students are well-prepared as they enroll or re-enroll in collegiate-level studies.