Madison College receives $3 million Department of Education grant

The U.S. Department of Education has awarded a $3 million research grant to Madison Area Technical College to improve advising services to students and increase college degree completion or transfer. The college is among 10 institutions receiving the Title III grants.

Currently, a little more than half of Madison College students are retained from their first fall semester to the next fall semester, which is minimally better than the national rate of slightly less than 50 percent. Many students do not take advantage of advising and career services offered by the college. As a result, they don’t know which courses will best help them meet their goals.

“We want to connect with students earlier to help them identify their career path and make sure their courses are aligned for efficient progression to graduation,” said Jack E. Daniels, III, president of Madison College.

The five-year Pathways to Success grant will help the college implement strategies to address advising needs of all students, including those who lack basic skills. Proposed methods include online tools, connected data systems and increased training for faculty advisors. Successful approaches will be shared with other higher education institutions.

Plans include a unified portal to assist students in planning their educational and career path, and linking them to advising and other services to support their progress toward their goal. The college will also increase the number of well-trained faculty advisors and create a series of short videos and other online resources that address common topics at various points in a student’s progress to graduation.

Published October 11, 2017.