Ascendium Awards New $2 Million Grant to the Institute for Evidence-Based Change Supporting Its Caring Campus Initiative
Ascendium Education Group, one of the nation's leading higher education philanthropies, has awarded a second grant to IEBC for the Caring Campus Initiative.
In addition to expanding our work with college staff to increase student retention by cultivating a Caring Campus environment, the new round of Ascendium funding will allow us to focus on faculty and their role in increasing student success.
The objective of Caring Campus is to increase student retention and success in community colleges by creating and cultivating Caring Campus environments through intentional behaviors by faculty and staff to improve students' sense of caring and connectedness to the college. "We believe there are common behaviors that better connect students with staff and faculty," said IEBC President and CEO Dr. Brad Phillips. "This project realizes IEBC's mission of improving student success and closing equity gaps."
"We're excited to support this opportunity to learn more about how campus culture can serve to promote student success rather than impede it," said Amy Kerwin, Vice President of Education Philanthropy at Ascendium.
The new grant also supports IEBC's work with the Community College Research Center (CCRC) to better understand how the initiative works to change college culture and improve student outcomes.
Caring Campus recognizes and leverages the value of connectedness to increase the likelihood that students will continue towards, and succeed in attaining, their educational goals. Faculty and staff interaction with students can set the stage for successful enrollment, persistence, and completion.
Research Partnership With CCRC Seeks Understanding to Advance IEBC's Work
Thomas Brock, Director of the Community College Research Center
Defying the stereotype of an office-bound number cruncher,
Community College Research Center (CCRC) Director Thomas Brock says research comes alive when he engages directly with college faculty, staff, and students in the field.
"I always leave field visits with a deeper understanding of a problem or opportunity
than before I went," said Brock. "As a researcher, one of my primary objectives is to then try to amplify those stories so others understand."
IEBC's latest grant funding from Ascendium Education Group creates a new partnership between the Columbia University-based CCRC and IEBC for research of the Caring Campus initiative. Brock says the partnership provides a rare opportunity to gain a better understanding of how the initiative works to change college culture and improve student outcomes.
A Conversation With Brad Phillips and Jordan Horowitz
t's not easy to get IEBC President and CEO Brad Phillips and IEBC Chief Operating Officer Jordan Horowitz to find time to pause and reflect on the impressive body of work IEBC has accomplished over the past year.
The upcoming year
Dr. Brad Philips
will be no different, with a new grant from Ascendium Education Group supporting a new Caring Campus initiative with two new groups of seven colleges. In addition to expanding the program working with staff and faculty to increase student retention by cultivating a caring campus environment, the
new round of Ascendium funding will also allow IEBC to work with the Community College Research Center (CCRC) to evaluate the initiative's impact on students, faculty, and staff.
As 2019 comes to a close, Brad and Jordan reflected on the positive work done to date, and the potential in the year ahead.
IEBC Caring Campus Coaches Shine The Light On Staff
IEBC coach Jean Petty (back row, far left) with Caring Campus participants at Maysville Community and Technical College in Kentucky
Participants in IEBC's Caring Campus initiative learn the importance of their meaningful connection with students. IEBC uses a coaching model to involve staff in student success in a strategic, systematic way - often leveraging behaviors already in practice among staff who don't fully realize the vital role they can play.
Caring Campus coach Jean Petty discusses her approach during coaching sessions and the results when participants make the connectionin her interview here.