TCC SELECTED FOR NATIONAL INITIATIVE TO INCREASE
New program – Achieving the Dream –
launches this fall at 27 U.S. community colleges
HAMPTON ROADS, Va. – (Aug. 31, 2004) –
Tidewater Community College has been selected with 27 community
colleges in five states to participate in Achieving the Dream:
Community Colleges Count, a new initiative to enhance the academic
success of low-income and minority students.
TCC received a $50,000 investment grant to develop
plans for addressing this challenge, and will be eligible for
additional funding for implementation. Quintin Bullock, provost
of TCC’s Norfolk Campus, and Terry Jones, acting provost
for the Portsmouth Campus, head the initiative for the college.
“Community colleges are central to the success
of this population; our charge is to offer students the means
to reach their dreams, whether that’s securing good-paying
employment or furthering their education,” says TCC President
Deborah DiCroce. “The selection of TCC for this important
initiative points to our leadership in this arena, while giving
us the opportunity to research and re-think how to raise the bar
on student persistence rates.”
Achieving the Dream is a multi-year initiative funded
by Lumina Foundation for Education and involving several national
partner organizations. The first phase of the initiative will
directly involve the chosen colleges in Florida, New Mexico, North
Carolina, Texas and Virginia. In future years, the initiative
will expand to involve eligible community colleges in additional
“We look forward to finding and implementing
new and innovative ways to connect our students to the college
community, to open more paths to graduation, good jobs and careers,”
says Bullock. “We are taking up the challenge to create
a ‘culture of evidence’ as we examine statistics and
devise data-collection systems.” Recent retention-based
initiatives at TCC include the college’s Title III grant,
Creating the Conditions for Successful Student Achievement: Improving
and Linking Developmental Programs and Student Services; Student
Support TRIO program; the college’s Women’s Center;
Bridges Learning Systems project; and “Beating the Odds,”
a mentoring program for male students.
A team of national reviewers selected the 27 participating
institutions from among 60 community colleges that submitted proposals.
Eligible colleges are regionally accredited, public, associate
degree-granting institutions. Each college is required to have
an enrollment of at least 33 percent minority students or 50 percent
students who receive government-supported financial aid.
According to the reviewers, the colleges selected
are those that most effectively demonstrated their commitment
to increasing student success and best communicated their vision
for accomplishing this at their institutions.
TCC and the other participating community colleges
will be supported in their work by initiative partners with significant
expertise in this field, including the American Association of
Community Colleges; Community College Leadership Program at the
University of Texas-Austin; Community College Research Center,
Teacher’s College, Columbia University; Futures Project,
Brown University; Jobs for the Future; MDRC and Public Agenda.
These organizations, along with the initiative’s managing
partner, MDC, Inc., will help colleges identify and adapt practices
and policies to achieve their goals.
Tidewater Community College is the second
largest of the 23 community colleges in the Commonwealth of Virginia,
enrolling more than 34,000 students annually. The 37th largest in
the nationís 1,600 community-college network, TCC ranks among the
50 fastest-growing large community colleges. Founded in 1968 as
a part of the Virginia Community College System, the college serves
the South Hampton Roads region with campuses in Chesapeake, Norfolk,
Portsmouth and Virginia Beach as well as the TCC Jeanne and George
Roper Performing Arts Center in the theater district in downtown
Norfolk, the Visual Arts Center in Olde Towne Portsmouth and a regional
Advanced Technology Center in Virginia Beach. Forty-three percent
of the regionís residents attending a college or university in Virginia
last fall were enrolled at TCC.