Texarkana College Recognized by Achieving the Dream as a 2021 Leader College of Distinction

Texarkana College announced on February 15, 2022, that it has been designated a Leader College of Distinction by Achieving the Dream (ATD), a national nonprofit dedicated to advancing community colleges as hubs of equity and mobility in their communities.

“Texarkana College is incredibly proud to be recognized as an Achieving the Dream Leader College of Distinction,” said Texarkana College President Dr. Jason Smith. “Participation in the Achieving the Dream Network has helped us learn how to better evaluate student outcome data to determine what works best for student success.”

ATD created the Leader College of Distinction award in 2018 to recognize colleges that have pursued and met challenging student success goals, often earning Leader College status several times. Leader Colleges of Distinction must show improvement in three or more student outcome metrics, including at least one lagging indicator such as completion or transfer with an earned baccalaureate. Leader Colleges of Distinction are also required to show they have reduced equity gaps in at least two metrics for at least two student groups. These requirements recognize and motivate sustained and proactive reform efforts that result in greater improvements in student success and equity.

Dr. Donna McDaniel, TC’s vice president of instruction said, “TC has continuously improved student completion rates since joining the ATD Network and now we consistently rank as one of the top colleges in Texas for student success measures. Over the last three-year period, TC improved students’ 4-year completion rates by 15 percentage points and has significantly improved the gap between completion rates among white and black students. Our success stems from a campus culture of providing excellent service to students at all points of their journey. I am so proud of our enrollment services staff, our student support services personnel, and our faculty members for their contribution to TC earning the Leader College of Distinction status.”

McDaniel said implementation of campus-wide strategies led to changes in advising and curriculum and have proven to be effective for driving student success.

“Commitment by our faculty members to serve as student advisors, implementation of a Learning Frameworks course for all first time in college students, and use of an early alert system to identify students lagging behind in grades and attendance, has helped build a culture of excellence on our campus that helps students reach their fullest potential,” said McDaniel.

Texarkana College is part of the ATD Network, made up of 300+ colleges committed to advancing equity and supporting student success at their institutions and throughout their communities. Texarkana College has been a member of the ATD Network since 2010 and has held Leader College status since 2012.

About Achieving the DREAM

Achieving the Dream (ATD) leads a growing network of more than 300 community colleges committed to helping their students, particularly low-income students and students of color, achieve their goals for academic success, personal growth, and economic opportunity. ATD is making progress in closing equity gaps and accelerating student success through a unique change process that builds each college’s institutional capacities in seven essential areas. ATD, along with nearly 75 experienced coaches and advisors, works closely with Network colleges in 45 states and the District of Columbia to reach more than 4 million community college students.

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