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Gates Foundation Invests Half-Billion in Success of Community College Students

Dr. Lenore Rodicio is vice provost for Miami Dade Community College and a managing project director for Completion by Design in the Florida cadre.

Fundraising is becoming a necessity, as community colleges also look to foundations, rely on scholarships and partnering with more business and industry for support and opportunities.

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Those who enroll in community colleges are more apt to confront realities that make getting a college degree harder.

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With 13 million students served by more than 1,132 community colleges, community colleges across the nation are in the throes of a system-wide reinvention.

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According to FAFSA data, 58,000 applicants nationwide self-identified as homeless in the 2013-2014 academic year, up from 33,000 students in 2010-2011.

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California Community Colleges Chancellor Dr. Brice W. Harris says that the prospect of outcome-based funding poses the risk of forcing colleges to leave a whole generation of students behind.

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Massachusetts has begun a community college funding effort that will tie a share of a school’s budget to boosting graduation rates.

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A report shows that, of the estimated one in four students who start at community colleges and then move on to four-year institutions, more than 60 percent ultimately graduate.

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Academic leaders feel they may have hit upon a strategy that could wipe out the schools’ reputation for losing almost as many students as they enroll.

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Usually when a call is made for more diversity on campus, it entails increasing the proportion of poor students and students of color at selective institutions that grant baccalaureate degrees.

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