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SPC > SPC is proud to be an Achieving the Dream Institution
  • SPC is an Achieving the Dream School

SPC is proud to be an Achieving the Dream Institution

  • Courageous Conversations

    Leaders in each department are encouraged to engage faculty and staff members in “Courageous Conversations” to develop consensus on specific actions they will undertake to improve student success. The following questions will assist facilitators in guiding these conversations.

    1.  Completion of developmental courses 
      1.  If your discipline contains developmental courses, what are the barriers that impact student’s completion of those courses?
      2. Which specific student groups are having the most difficulty completing these courses (e.g. gender, race, ethnicity, disabilities, age, veterans, etc.?) Why?
    2.  Completion of Gateway courses (High enrollment, low success)  
      1. Identify Gateway courses within your program.
      2. Which specific student groups are having the most difficulty completing these courses (e.g. gender, race, ethnicity, disabilities, age, veterans, etc.?) Why?
    3.  Completion of all courses with C or better 
      1. Which courses within your discipline have the lowest success rates?
      2. Which specific student groups are having the most difficulty completing these courses (e.g. gender, race, ethnicity, disabilities, age, veterans, etc.?) Why?
    4.  Fall-to-Spring retention rate and Fall-to-Fall progression 
      1. What are the barriers that impact students’ semester to semester progression?
      2. Which specific student groups are most likely to “stop out”? Why?
    5.  Graduation rate 
      1. What barriers impact the ability for students to graduate from your program?
      2. Which specific student groups are less likely to graduate? Why?
  • What is Achieving the Dream?

    Achieving the Dream is a national movement to help more community college students, particularly low-income students and students of color, stay in school and earn a college certificate or degree. These students come to us with high hopes, but too many leave without completing the courses they take, earning certificates, or earning degrees. We want to learn what we can do as an institution to change that.

    Achieving the Dream is closing achievement gaps and accelerating student success nationwide by: 

    • Guiding evidence-based institutional improvement
    • Influencing public policy
    • Generating knowledge
    • Engaging the public

    Guiding Principles:

    Achieving the Dream has a set of overarching principles aimed at improving student success. 

    • Committed Leadership
    • Use of evidence
    • Broad Engagement
    • Systemic institutional improvement
    • Equity

    The Process:

    • Identify and prioritize problems
    • Develop strategies to address priority
      problems
    • Implement, evaluate and improve strategies
    • Institutionalize effective policies and
      practices
    •  

    Student Success Measures:

    • Completion of developmental courses
    • Completion of Gateway courses
    • Completion of all courses with C or better
    • Fall-to-Spring retention rate
    • Graduation rate
  • Helping Students Finish What They Start

    After a review of national best practices, SPC began implementing new strategic initiatives in Fall 2012. Under a larger values-based, student completion and success initiative, the College Experience was instituted through a strategic initiative communication plan for the projects entitled the 5/180 Plan. One goal of the 5/180 Plan was to ensure every staff member received the necessary training to best support the student success initiatives via a multi-tier training program entitled The College Experience Institute.

    The main strategic initiatives that all address the benchmark findings include:

    Results in Increased Student Success

    For the third consecutive semester, St. Petersburg College made significant gains in Spring 2014 in the success rates of its first-time-in-college students, a positive sign that the intensive efforts to expand student support are paying off. Read the full story.

  • Measuring our progress

    Promoting student achievement and success at St. Petersburg College is the primary commitment of our faculty and staff members.  Regular monitoring of five measures will help us demonstrate the extent to which our strategies contribute to higher levels of student success.

    1. Completion of developmental courses

    Successful completion of developmental courses will ensure student readiness for the rigors of academic programs and training.  Increasing the rate of successful course completion will reduce the amount of time required for program completion and earlier career entry or advancement and higher levels of education.

    • For the Fall term 2011, 58 percent of 7,667 students completed developmental courses with a grade of C or better

    2. Completion of Gateway courses

    • Focusing our attention on improving student success in those courses with high enrollment and low student success will enable us to have the greatest impact in the shortest amount of time

    3. Completion of all courses with C or better

    • Successful course completion contributes to on-time graduation and student advancement. Increasing the percentage of students completing courses with a grade of C or better will demonstrate improved student engagement and high quality instruction
    • For the 2011-12 academic year, the college-wide rate of course level student success was 73.9 percent

    4. Fall-to-Spring retention rate

    • Ensuring students continue their studies from the fall to the spring semesters will further advance on-time graduation and learning
    • Among those first time in college students enrolled for the Fall term 2011, 86 percent continued enrollment in the Spring term 2012

    5. Graduation rate

    • Our goal is to ensure that students complete their academic program in the shortest amount of time to enable them to advance in employment and/or high levels of education
    • For the 2011-12 academic year, SPC awarded 5,807 degrees and certificates including:
      • 1,061 baccalaureate degrees
      • 4,141 associate degrees (A.A., A.S. and A.A.S.)
      • 605 certificates