Four members of the Tackling Transfer National Advisory Board illustrate both the economic and equity imperative that state leaders have to prioritize investments in repairs to the community college transfer pipeline–and offer four concrete strategies to realize this effort.
Millions of students in America’s community colleges want to eventually earn a bachelor’s degree, but just a fraction successfully transfer to and graduate from four-year institutions. Even before the Covid-19 pandemic, our economy has left too many hard-working Americans like them behind, particularly Black and Latino Americans without a college degree. These disparities have only grown in the wake of the pandemic.
As people seek to find financial stability, a growing number will turn to community colleges as affordable, accessible gateways to higher education and successful careers. Of the millions of students who enter community college this fall, 80% will indicate a goal of earning a bachelor’s degree. But just 13% will achieve that goal. This sharp decline is due to the broken college transfer pipeline, which lets too many students slip through the cracks in their pursuit of a bachelor’s degree.