Study finds two-year credentials help students succeed in four-year institutions

Study finds two-year credentials help students succeed in four-year institutionsThe National Student Clearinghouse released a report showing that Students with credentials fare better as transfers from community colleges. In the Chronicle of Higher Education, writer Katherine Mangan highlights important findings, including data that indicate students who complete a two-year degree or certificate are more likely to finish a bachelor’s degree than those who transfer to a four-year institution without a credential.

Tulsa Community College is acting to ensure more students are aware of the benefits of completing an associate degree or certificate. TCC employees made phone calls to thousands of students in the fall 2012 and spring 2013 semesters encouraging and reminding them to file for graduation—a necessary step that some students don’t take.

“Students often comment that they are not aware of the process or that they need to file for graduation,” said Terri Alonso, Dean of Student Services. “Grad Blitz addresses the needs of our students by making students aware of the graduation process at TCC.”

Grad Blitz is one of the many ways TCC is actively participating in the Complete College America initiative, a national nonprofit organization established to increase the number of Americans who hold college credentials and close completion gaps for traditionally underrepresented groups. TCC President Dr. Tom McKeon serves on Oklahoma’s CCA leadership team led by Gov. Mary Fallin, and administrators formed a Graduate Initiative Task Force in 2012 with the specific goal of increasing student completion rates using strategic methods.

The efforts are working. During the 2012-2013 academic year, 2,672 graduates and 2,915 degrees and certificates awarded. Those numbers compare to 2,437 graduates and 2,618 degrees and certificates awarded for the previous year.