As part of a nationwide effort amongst community colleges, Edison State Community College is working toward implementing the Guided Pathways to Success initiative to help students complete programs faster through early planning, program mapping, and guidance and support throughout their education.

Dr. Davis Jenkins, a co-author of the groundbreaking book Redesigning America’s Community Colleges and a senior research associate at the Community College Research Center (CRCC) at Columbia University’s Teachers College, recently visited Edison State to meet with faculty, administration, and staff about Edison State’s implementation of the Guided Pathways initiative.

“After a day talking with faculty, staff, administrators, and board members, I think Edison State is well poised to implement clearer pathways to success for their students,” said Jenkins. “They’ve got some of the key pieces in place and faculty and staff seem to be on board and are asking good questions. We at CCRC are looking forward to learning from Edison State as these improvements are put in place.”

The guided pathways model is an integrated, institution-wide approach to student success that includes four essential practices: (1) clarification of paths to student end goals through program maps and transfer pathways; (2) helping students choose and enter a pathway bridging K12 to higher education and assisting students by aligning mathematics and foundational skills with their program of study; (3) helping students stay on their chosen path by providing strong advising along with academic and non-academic supports; and (4) ensuring that students are learning skills and knowledge required for success in employment and further education.

“We were honored to have Dr. Jenkins on our campus to offer his expertise regarding our implementation of the Guided Pathways to Success initiative,” said Chris Spradlin, Provost at Edison State. “Dr. Jenkins provided a wealth of detailed information, valuable insight, and encouragement that will help us to refine our approach to promoting student success at Edison State.”

The announcement was also made that Edison State has been selected as one of six community colleges in Ohio to participate in a research study conducted by the CCRC of the guided pathways project.

Following a 2-day site visit in the spring, the CCRC will provide feedback to Edison State, summarizing initial observations about the College’s adoption of guided pathways practices as well as suggestions for improving implementation moving forward. Following the conclusion of all six site visits, the CRCC will prepare a comprehensive report that will integrate findings across the institutions.

Edison State is a member of the Student Success Leadership Institute sponsored by the Ohio Association of Community Colleges and the Ohio Department of Higher Education. The Institute is funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the Great Lakes Higher Education Guaranty Corporation. All 23 of Ohio’s community colleges are participating in the Institute through which the Guided Pathways initiative is being developed.