Community College Leadership Summit

Community Forum
Friday January 23, 2015 7:00am to 7:00pm

In recognition of the increasingly critical role of two-year institutions in achieving our nation’s goals for equitable access to and success in higher education, AAC&U’s Centennial Annual Meeting will feature a special Community College Leadership Summit—all day on Friday, January 23—made possible by generous support from The Kresge Foundation as part of the Advancing Roadmaps for Community College Leadership to Improve Student Learning and Success project.

The Community College Leadership Summit will bring together more than 100 leaders from community colleges, as well as national and regional organizations dedicated to community college student success. Participating leaders will share their promising strategies and identify opportunities for collaboration in order to scale the many effective practices and policies for community college student success in a national, systemic, and sustainable way. 

All Annual Meeting registrants are welcome to attend the concurrent and themed sessions and the evening reception. The networking breakfast is by invitation only. To reserve a spot on the waiting list, e-mail Christina Duhig at .



7:00-8:30 a.m.
Networking Breakfast 

Divided We Fail: Advancing Roadmaps for Community College Leadership
(by invitation)

Charlene Dukes, President, Prince George’s Community College and Chair-elect, American Association of Community Colleges; Carol Lincoln, Senior Vice President, Achieving the Dream; Chera D. Reid, Program Officer, Education Program, The Kresge Foundation; Gretchen Schmidt, Program Director, Postsecondary State Policy, Jobs for the Future; Carol Geary Schneider, President, Association of American Colleges and Universities; Joshua Wyner, Executive Director, Aspen Institute College Excellence Program


8:45-10:00 a.m.

Guided Learning Pathways: Defining Expectations for Community College Student Success

The subject of guided and coherent pathways to advance student success at the community college level has received significant attention in both research and practice in the last several years. These initiatives, which have been shown to positively influence college completion, are often focused on providing students with the structure and supports necessary to navigate institutional requirements, including developmental education sequences, for a seamless path to graduation or transfer. However, most research and campus initiatives employing the guided pathways concept are not structured to foreground or measure student learning as a critical component. Given the mounting evidence that initiatives must include both completion and student learning within the definition of student success in order to assure desired student outcomes in terms of workforce, civic engagement, and individual social mobility, this panel will address how to integrate the structural notion of guided pathways with the necessary supports and accountability for student achievement of learning.

Maria Harper Marinick, Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost, Maricopa Community Colleges; Maria Hesse, Vice Provost for Academic Partnerships, Arizona State University; Davis Jenkins, Senior Research Associate, Community College Research Center; Joaquin Martinez, Associate Provost, Miami Dade College
Moderator:  Gretchen Schmidt, Program Director for Postsecondary State Policy, Jobs for the Future


10:30-11:45 a.m.

Improving Faculty Development Through Intentional Collaboration

Research from Achieving the Dream and other national initiatives has noted the fundamental importance of teaching and learning interventions in “moving the needle” on student success and completion, as well as the challenges institutions face in engaging faculty in transformative work. It has become critical to scale up faculty development both within institutions and on a broader scale. At many institutions, however, faculty development is handled by an individual, small office, or committee. How can these isolated persons and groups gain the benefits of shared wisdom and operational knowledge of the professional development field?  This panel will address faculty development from the perspective of a national reform educational organization, a statewide student success center in Michigan, and three separate institutions where geographically-distant teaching and learning center directors created a generative community of practice. Hear how the panelists are using LEAP and related initiatives to jump start transformative conversations, foster mentoring relationships, and share resources to enrich professional development.  

Mary Carney, Director of Center for Teaching, Learning, and Leadership, University of North Georgia; Dallas Dolan, Director, Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning, The Community College of Baltimore County; Donna Seagle, Director, Teaching and Learning Academy, Chattanooga State Community College; Jenny Schanker, Director of Research and Institutional Practice at Michigan Center for Student Success
Moderator: Cindy Lenhart, Vice President for Community College  Relations, Achieving the Dream


Suggested Afternoon Sessions

1:30-2:30 pm

For Institutions, By Institutions: Creating a Framework for Post-Collegiate Outcomes Reporting

In recent years there has been increasing focus on accountability and transparency by state and federal policy-makers, as well as the general public.  Attention has recently been turned to the outcomes of students once they leave their colleges and universities, to determine how well the education and training served the students who attended.   This session will present an overview of the work of the Post-Collegiate Outcomes (PCO) initiative designed to include broad perspectives on post-collegiate outcomes, and will explore the rationale for different types of measures for different audiences.   Charged with developing a framework and proposed policy agenda, the initiative has been working to create answers for institutions, by institutions including:  Who will be included in the measure and for whom is this an appropriate measure?  What data is collected, analyzed and displayed?  Where are the data coming from?  When is the appropriate time to measure this outcome?  And why is this data important?

Kent Phillippe, Associate Vice President, Research and Student Success, American Association of Community Colleges; Teri Hinds, Associate Director, Voluntary System of Accountability, Association of Public and Land-grant Universities


2:45-4:00 pm

Supporting Transfer and Swirling Students through Intersystem Collaboration

In discussions of equity and inclusive excellence, students who transfer or swirl between two- and four-year institutions are often invisible. They face extra challenges, having to navigate multiple systems with limited guidance, and are likely to take units that do not count toward their ultimate goals, slowing progress and lowering completion rates. There is also evidence that “new majority” students are disproportionately affected by these issues of transfer and swirl.  This session will describe innovative ways that two- and four-year institutions are working together across campuses and systems to align the curriculum, create clearer pathways to the baccalaureate, improve support services, and offer joint professional development programs that can smooth transitions and improve student success.   Panelists will discuss how to promote, sustain, scale, and assess intersystem strategies to support transfer and swirling students, and will address the broader program and policy issues that shape our capacity to respond to the needs of these students.

Debra David, Project Director, Give Students a Compass, California State University System Office; Michelle Pilati, Project Director, Linked Learning Pathways to the Baccalaureate, Rio Hondo College; Ken O'Donnell, Senior Director, Student Engagement and Academic Initiatives and Partnerships, California State University Chancellor's Office; Tia McNair, Senior Director, Student Success, AAC&U


4:15-5:30 pm

Getting to 60%: An Innovation Strategy for Dramatically Increasing Student Success and Persistence

Proficiency-based education has the potential to significantly increase college readiness leading to student success and persistence, ultimately resulting in students who are better prepared for the fast-changing world around us.  Participants will learn about important changes in K-12 and a higher education model designed for today’s students. The University of Maine at Presque Isle’s innovative approach to the development of its own proficiency-based education system, as well as its engagement with high schools on improving learning outcome alignment, is an innovation designed to increase student success while growing UMPI’s enrollment.   Participants will also learn about a successful initiative by the New England Secondary School Consortium to secure the endorsement of proficiency-based approaches to learning, instruction, graduation, and high school transcripts by fifty-five universities and colleges in five states and will explore the possibility of expanding this endorsement process nationally. 

Linda Schott, President, University of Maine at Presque Isle; Cory Curl, Senior Fellow, Assessment and Accountability State Policy and Implementation Support, Achieve; J. Duke Albanese, Senior Policy Advisor, Great Schools Partnership; David Ruff, Executive Director, Great Schools Partnership; Jennifer Wolfe, Program Advisor, The Learning Accelerator


5:30-7:00 p.m.
Reception for Community College Leadership Summit
We welcome all community college leaders and national or regional partner organizations.


For more information about the Community College Leadership Summit, e-mail Tia McNair, Senior Director for Student Success, at

kresge.gifThis project is supported by a grant from The Kresge Foundation. To learn more about the Foundation and its grant programs, visit