October 7, 2019 – Davidson County Community College received a grant of $2.25 million from the U.S. Department of Education. The college is one of 31 projected recipients of the Title III Part A grant. Funds will be delivered to the institution over a five-year period starting this month.
The Department of Education program helps eligible institutions of higher education become self-sufficient and expand capacity. The focus is on serving low-income students by improving and strengthening the academic quality, institutional management and fiscal stability of colleges.
“With a grant of this size we have the flexibility of addressing several critical areas pertaining to student success,” said DCCC President Darrin Hartness. “We are looking forward to using these funds to invest in the professional development of our faculty, provide support for the success of our students and build upon the level of excellence we strive for at DCCC.”
The college plans to use the funds for faculty development, administrative management, technology and classroom enhancements, student service programs and course design among other needs identified through the grant application process.
“A primary area of growth that we identified and will use the Title III grant to address is advanced professional development and creating differentiated instruction,” said Director of Learning Design Dori Lloyd. “Selected courses will receive an infusion of high-impact strategies associated with student success, with the goal of seeing more students not only earn passing grades but also complete their program with the college.”
In addition to professional development opportunities for faculty, a new Center for Teaching and Learning will be further established at the college. The center will offer exploration and testing of new technologies, training in current instructional technology and annual summer institutes for learning and sharing of best practices. Summer institutes will provide thematic cross-curricular professional development for faculty across all programs.
To help provide students more support and high-touch guidance through the enrollment to completion process, a new completion coaching system will allow for customized, proactive assistance for students. Completion coaches mentor students, offer referrals for additional resources and intervene to address academic and non-academic obstacles to persistence and completion.
The grant also gives DCCC increased ability for analyzing student progress. With better tools and more resources to monitor student success, the college anticipates earlier interventions and data sharing among key student support services on campus. As the college starts to implement the programs associated with the Title III grant, it is expected that more students will complete their educational goals and graduate.
“Our students come into college with ambitions of achieving educational goals that lead to employment and a higher quality of life,” said Vice President of Academic Affairs Margaret Annunziata. “It’s our job to work as a community of supporters who champion each student towards those goals. This grant will help us do that more efficiently and in a way that only the appropriate funds can establish.”