UI joins national effort to increase college access, equity, and degree attainment

Iowa Now – Campus

The University of Iowa has announced it is participating in a massive new effort in which 130 public universities and systems will work together to increase college access, close the achievement gap, and award hundreds of thousands more degrees by 2025. The participating institutions will work within “clusters” of four to 12 institutions as they concurrently implement innovative and effective practices to advance student success on their campuses. Collectively, the institutions enroll 3 million students, including 1 million students who receive Pell grants.The Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU) is organizing the collaborative effort, known as Powered by Publics: Scaling Student Success, at its 131st Annual Meeting now underway in New Orleans, Louisiana.

“A public institution like ours provides undergraduates the valuable opportunity to tackle real-world problems and collaborate with some of the best faculty in the country to improve people’s lives,” says UI President J. Bruce Harreld. “This experience should be available to every student qualified and willing to accept the challenge of a rigorous education at the University of Iowa. Student success is among our highest priorities and a major pillar of our strategic plan, so it was an easy decision to sign on to this important initiative.”

Powered by Publics represents the largest-ever collaborative effort to improve college access, advance equity, and increase college degrees awarded. In addition to committing to those goals, participating institutions have pledged to share aggregate data demonstrating their progress to help spur lasting change across the higher education sector.

“Over the past few years, we’ve witnessed a real and growing enthusiasm among public university leaders to advance college completion nationally,” says APLU President Peter McPherson. “We have to seize the moment and mobilize institutions to improve not just college access, but also equity in student outcomes and the number of students who earn degrees. That’s what Powered by Publics is all about …

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