Major National Grant Helps Community Colleges Build Capacity for Next Generation Coaching and Advising with InsideTrack

Pioneering student success company, InsideTrack, today announced its selection as part of a new initiative to improve student outcomes at four U.S. community colleges with significant low-income, minority and first-generation student populations. With support from The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, InsideTrack will work with leaders from Austin Community College, Northeast Wisconsin Technical College, East Mississippi Community College and a California-based institution currently being selected, to build and maintain data-driven student success coaching and advising programs.

The initiative takes a “teach to fish” approach, helping college administrators, staff and faculty build the institutional capabilities and infrastructure required to provide highly personalized student support. By focusing on geographically distributed community colleges with highly diverse student populations, the initiative will serve as a model for closing higher education achievements gaps nationwide.

“Coaching programs and other proven approaches to improving student outcomes can be challenging to implement and sustain at scale,” said Kai Drekmeier, founder and president of InsideTrack. “By assisting community colleges in building the foundational capacity to launch and ensure the ongoing efficacy of these programs, we can positively impact deserving students for generations to come.”

The new partnership represents an extension of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s groundbreaking Integrated Planning and Advising for Student Success (IPASS) initiative. Under the grant, participating institutions will receive full access to InsideTrack’s Capacity Building services, which include support with training, pedagogy, data analysis and technology.

“ACC is proud of the progress we’ve made in supporting students through guided pathways and technology-supported advising strategies,” said Virginia Fraire, Vice President of Student Services at Austin Community College. “Working with InsideTrack will enable us to extend this support through coaching to help students develop skills in self-advocacy, motivation, and problem-solving so they can truly drive their own success.”

InsideTrack’s coaching methodology, technology and tools have been proven to improve student outcomes in hundreds of randomized control trials. The grant is geared toward enabling institutions to scale and sustain similar coaching efforts and includes training for college staff on how to best engage students through a variety of channels including voice, email, text messaging, social media and mobile apps.

“Student success and helping our students overcome challenges is our number one goal at NWTC,” said Dr. Jeff Rafn, president of Northeast Wisconsin…

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