Posted on April 20th, 2012 No comments
~The Florida College Access & Success Summit will feature a panel discussion offering replicable, successful strategies for Florida institutions and organizations~
Tampa, FL- Attendees of the Florida College Access & Success Summit will gain in-depth insight into the successful strategies implemented by various college readiness, access and completion organizations across the nation.
Building a college-going and success culture in Florida requires integrating tools and proven practices within our K-12 and college classrooms while reaching students and families in their communities with high-quality resources and information that help prepare them academically, socially and financially for postsecondary success. The summit’s “College Access & Success Strategies” panel discussion, sponsored by New Futuro, brings together a select group of leaders representing high-quality college access and success programs from across the country to highlight successful strategies and lessons learned along the way.
Featured panelists include Bob Giannino-Racine, CEO of ACCESS, Judy Reno, Director of College Depot, Leroy Nesbitt, Program Director of College for Every Student, Thomas Albano, Executive Director of Take Stock in Children, Nadine Dalrymple, Director of POSSE Foundation, Inc. Miami, and Vivien Carter, Executive Director of College Summit Florida, Dr. Stacy Carlson, Vice President and Program Director for Helios Education Foundation will moderate the panel discussion.
“There’s great work taking place in Florida and across the country around preparing students for postsecondary success,” said Braulio Colón, Executive Director for Florida College Access Network (Florida C.A.N.!) “The goal here is to capture replicable strategies that work and to promote them to local leaders from across our state,” said Colón.
The Florida College Access & Success Summit convenes leaders from all sectors for a call-to-action around an agenda to significantly increase Florida’s college degree attainment rate from 37% to 60% by the year 2025.
The summit is organized by Florida C.A.N.! and will take place on Friday, May 11th from 9am-2pm at the University of South Florida’s Marshall Student Center in Tampa. All organizations, businesses, and individuals interested in helping Florida significantly increase its college degree attainment rate are invited to participate.
The Florida College Access & Success summit’s detailed agenda, including the schedule, speakers and travel accommodations can be found here. Florida C.A.N! receives support from the Florida Department of Education, Helios Education Foundation, Lumina Foundation and the University of South Florida.
Posted on April 12th, 2012 No comments
Tampa, FL- In order to lead and remain economically competitive globally, Florida needs to produce more college graduates with high-quality degrees or credentials. Doing so will require strong partnerships across sectors and local action that maximizes resources, reduces duplication, and builds broad-based consensus around Florida’s programmatic and policy direction for improving higher education. That’s why the Florida College Access Network (Florida C.A.N.!) is launching an effort to create and strengthen a statewide network that catalyzes and supports communities to improve college and career preparation, access, and completion for all students.
All organizations, businesses, and individuals interested in helping Florida significantly increase its college degree attainment rate are invited to participate in the Florida College Access & Success Summit in Tampa next month. The summit takes place on Friday, May 11th from 9am-2pm at the University of South Florida’s Marshall Student Center. The Florida College Access & Success Summit brings together leaders from all sectors for a call-to-action around an agenda to significantly increase Florida’s college degree attainment rate from 37% to 60% by the year 2025. Attendees will learn about state policy trends, Goal 2025, college access and success strategies, and an opportunity to contribute ideas on the best way to support local integrated approaches for improving college access and success for 21st century students.
“This is the first time we are bringing together all of our national, state and local partners to discuss a strategy designed to spur local community action in Florida,” said Braulio Colón, Executive Director for Florida C.A.N.!. “If we want to position our state to succeed in the future, now is the time for all stakeholders to come together for the purpose of improving college and career readiness, access, and completion for all students,” said Colón.
Click Here for the summit’s detailed agenda, featured speakers, sponsorship opportunities and hotel accommodations. Florida C.A.N! receives support from the Florida Department of Education, Helios Education Foundation, Lumina Foundation and the University of South Florida.
Posted on April 9th, 2012 No comments
~New report highlights Florida higher education institutions ranked in the top 25 nationally for graduating Latinos~
Tampa, FL- Florida makes the grade in a report recently released by one of Florida College Access Network’s national partners. Excelencia in Education’s “Finding Your Workforce” provides an analysis of the top 25 institutions graduating Hispanics nationally. The project’s goal is to help employers recruit recent Latino degree recipients in key sectors.
In the opening report of the “Finding Your Workforce” series, several Florida institutions come out on top of their national peers in the total number of degrees or certificates awarded to Latinos during the 2009 to 2010 school year. Top Florida institutions include Florida International University, Miami Dade College, the University of Florida and the University of Central Florida.
Florida International University ranks #1 in the nation for the amount of bachelor and master degrees it awards Hispanics. FIU also ranks 10th for professional degrees and 19th in doctoral degrees awarded to Latinos during the 2009-10 school year.
The report also shows Miami Dade College awards more associate degrees to Latinos than any other institution in the country. During the 2009-10 school year, 65% of all Miami Dade College graduates were Latino.
The University of Florida scores high in the report as well, placing 6th for professional degrees, 9th for doctoral degrees, 11th for bachelor degrees and 21st for master degrees awarded to Hispanics.
The University of Central Florida is in at #14 of U.S. institutions awarding the most bachelor degrees to Latinos.
Private universities round out the top 25 as well, including the University of Miami, which is 9th on the list of national institutions that award professional degrees to Latinos.
Other Florida institutions in the top 25 of all academic levels are Broward College, Valencia Community College, Palm Beach State College, Nova Southeastern University, Saint Thomas University, Everest Institute-Hialeah, Everest University-South Orlando, Florida Career College-Miami, Florida National College, Fortis College-Miami and Keiser University-Ft. Lauderdale.
The findings are crucial to Florida C.A.N.!’s mission to help increase the number of working-age adults in Florida with a high-quality degree or credential to 60% by the year 2025. “Latinos represent the largest minority population in the state. We can’t reach Goal 2025 without the Hispanic community being fully aware of the opportunities that exist in higher education and without more Hispanics earning postsecondary degrees or certificates,” said Braulio Colón, Executive Director for Florida C.A.N.!. “I applaud FIU, MDC and the other state institutions on the list for their successful retention and completion strategies,” said Colón.
“Finding Your Workforce” is a project of Excelencia in Education’s national initiative “Ensuring America’s Future.” The “Finding Your Workforce” series will include future reports revealing and analyzing the top 25 institutions enrolling and graduating Latinos in key sectors, such as health, science, technology, engineering, math, business, education and liberal arts.
Posted on April 6th, 2012 No comments
~The statewide network will support local efforts to increase Florida’s degree attainment rate to 60% by the year 2025~
Taskforce members, representing multiple organizations including the Consortium of Florida Education Foundations,Community Foundation of Tampa Bay, Helios Education Foundation, Florida Board of Governors, Florida Department of Education, Florida College System, National College Access Network and the University of South Florida met this week in Tampa to develop a draft strategic plan outlining the network goals and strategies for supporting state and local partner efforts.
The Florida College Access Network Taskforce will now seek feedback on the draft plan from stakeholders and partners across the state beginning on May 11th during the Florida College Access and Success Summit in Tampa. All organizations, businesses, and individuals interested in helping Florida significantly increase its college degree attainment rate are invited to participate. For more information on the summit, click here.
Florida’s economy will soon demand more college graduates. According to a recent analysis of occupation data and workforce trends by the Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce, 59-percent of all jobs in Florida will require postsecondary education by the year 2018. Between now and 2018, Florida will need to fill about 2.8 million vacancies resulting from job creation, worker retirements, and other factors. Of these jobs vacancies, more than 1.6 million will require postsecondary credentials.
Today, only 37-percent of the Florida’s 9.8 million working-age adults (25-64 years old) hold at least a two-year degree, according to 2010 Census data. This compares to a national average of 38-percent. If Florida continues to increase degree attainment at the rate it did over the last decade (2000-2010), the state will have a college degree attainment rate of 43-percent in 2025—far short of the 60-percent state goal.
This degree attainment gap underscores the urgent need to raise awareness, build consensus across sectors, and mobilize communities to accelerate degree production in Florida. Having an infrastructure in place that maximizes resources, reduces the duplication of services, and builds broad-based consensus around Florida’s programmatic and policy direction in higher education is essential to helping Florida meet the challenge. Creating and strengthening such an infrastructure will require a collaborative effort of individuals and organizations determined to serve students to improve college and career readiness, access, and completion rates.
In October of 2011, the Helios Education Foundation awarded the University of South Florida a planning grant to support the development of Florida’s first collaborating network of national, state, and local entities committed to increasing Florida’s degree attainment rate. The project also receives financial support from the Florida Department of Education, Lumina Foundation for Education, and the University of South Florida. Through an 18-month planning process, the new effort builds upon the previous network development efforts of ENLACE Florida and supports its transition to become the official Florida College Access Network.
Posted on March 15th, 2012 No comments
~Only about 24% of high school seniors in Florida have completed the Free Application for Federal Student Aid~
The FAFSA Completion Tool website allows you to track how many students in each high school across the country are submitting and completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Previously, high schools estimated their FAFSA completion rate using self-reported surveys, which are often unreliable.
Florida College Access Network (Florida C.A.N.!) crunched Florida’s current numbers and uncovered out of 174,352 12th graders currently attending high schools in the state, 41,363 have completed the FAFSA as of March 8, 2012. That’s only 23.7 percent. “That number is significant because although the state deadline to complete the FAFSA is May 15th, several Florida institutions’ priority deadlines have already passed,” said Braulio Colón, Executive Director for Florida C.A.N.!.
With college costs rising, financial aid is a key factor for many people deciding whether to attend and complete college. By filling out a FAFSA, a student can find out if he or she is eligible for financial aid such as Pell Grants, federal student loans and work study opportunities. Research shows a strong correlation between FAFSA completion and college enrollment. “In order to improve college enrollment, retention and graduation rates, there’s an obvious need to boost the less than 24 percent FAFSA completion rate in Florida,” said Colón.
The new FAFSA Completion Tool will be updated every two weeks.
Posted on March 13th, 2012 No comments
~The senior researcher and community engagement specialist will focus on building support for Goal 2025 and developing tools to track our efforts to get there~
Troy Miller is the new senior researcher and policy analyst for Florida C.A.N.! In his role, Mr. Miller will lead the network efforts in researching effective state and institutional policies and practices at the K-12 and postsecondary levels that contribute toward improving college and career preparation, access, and completion. He will also work with network members to develop and deploy effective analytical tools designed to track and measure network impact.
Before taking this role, Mr. Miller held a variety of instructional and administrative positions where he helped support student success and learning at both Central Michigan University and the University of South Florida. Mr. Miller is currently a Ph.D. student in the higher education administration program at the University of South Florida.
As Florida C.A.N.!’s new community engagement specialist, Lalita Llerena brings more than a decade of communications experience to the network. Mrs. Llerena will manage Florida C.A.N.!’s partnerships and collaborations—supporting the development and expansion of local college access networks, leading the Goal 2025 public will-building efforts through written communications, multimedia publicity and special events, and implementing strategies that strengthen Florida C.A.N.!’s position as the clearinghouse of knowledge, trends and relationships for college access and success in Florida.
Before joining Florida C.A.N.!, Mrs. Llerena managed a 24-hour local news team as an executive producer for Bay News 9 in the Tampa/St. Petersburg market. Prior to her nine years there, Mrs. Llerena field produced for Ivanhoe Broadcast News in the Orlando market. She also worked as a producer and reporter for WUFT-TV and WRUF-AM and holds a Bachelor’s degree in telecommunications from the University of Florida.
“Troy and Lalita bring a wealth of experience and passion that’s critical to helping us build and strengthen a statewide college access network,” said Braulio Colón, Executive Director for Florida C.A.N.! “With the addition of two strong and experienced team members, I believe we are equipped with the talent and passion needed to support our local network partners, more effectively advocate for all students, and ultimately help our state achieve GOAL 2025 ,” said Colón.
Posted on December 9th, 2011 No comments
~Grant designed to facilitate the process for developing community-led college access and success strategy ~
Posted on November 18th, 2011 1 comment
~Braulio Colón, Executive Director for the Florida College Access Network, shared information about the Florida College Access Network, Goal 2025, and why’s it important~
The Florida College Access Network promotes college readiness, access, and success for all students, particularly limited income and first generation students. We are a statewide network that engages local communities and empowers them to get into the game of college access and success. Whether it’s through a non-profit developing a college access program, a city government incorporating college access into their parks and rec programs, or a business offering tuition reimbursement to its employees—we want everyone in the game to not only support higher education and but to also become active participants in helping more students succeed and earn degrees.
We are beginning our work by promoting a big goal for Florida. We call it Goal 2025. You may already be familiar with it. In fact, it’s a national movement started by our partners at the Lumina Foundation. Simply put, we want to increase the percentage of adults in Florida who hold a 2-yr or 4-yr degree to 60% by the year 2025. You have the details of this goal in your packets. Over 50 organizations have already signed on in support of Goal 2025 and we will be launching a Goal 2025 pledge campaign next year for individuals interested in supporting higher education. It’s this goal that has mobilized communities in support of higher education. The goal compliments and aligns with the 2020 goal you’ve set and from what I’ve read in the Florida College System strategic plan we are well on our way to meeting Goal 2025.
In addition to building public will around the goal, we are also beginning to support the development of local college access networks. We recognize that there’s a need for fundamental change in how we reach students that will take us from the current patchwork of discrete college access programs working in isolation to a coordinated system linking students to a comprehensive array of services within a supportive environment. Moving students successfully through this pipeline requires a system of organizations, government agencies, funders, businesses, and individual champions. Let’s work together to develop a local college access network in your community.
No group knows better than you the challenges and opportunities our students and systems face. You’ve seen enrollment on your campuses spike, state funding drop, and the value of Bright Futures decline. And so you’re once again being asked to do more with less. But as you prepare for this upcoming legislative session, I encourage you this morning to explore ways to empower your local communities to support your efforts—whether it’s plugging them into the Finish Up Florida campaign, or developing a place-based scholarship for your campus. I know that if we are going to help more students succeed and earn a degree in the 21st century, it will require collaboration.
I want to take this time to thank Dr. Holcombe and Dr. Bilsky for their leadership in our state and their support of our work at the Florida College Access Network.
Members of the Council, I invite each of you to partner with us. Endorse Goal 2025 and let’s build networks in your communities that work.
Posted on November 4th, 2011 No comments
~Grant is designed to support the process for developing community-based college access programs~
Posted on November 3rd, 2011 No comments
~Students in Hillsborough County are invited to submit artwork showing how they’re preparing for college~