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Venture Philanthropy / Strategic Partnerships

College Advising Corps

The foundation’s 2017 grant supported a project that brings together two leaders in the college access and success field, College Advising Corps (CAC) and the College Board, to form a learning lab in which they can work together to test and implement, on a national level, strategies geared toward guiding high-potential,  low- and moderate-income students to receive the information and support needed to apply to, enroll in, and graduate from appropriately-matched colleges.

CAC and the College Board have identified the critical milestones from high school to college as moments to accelerate student trajectories. Through this partnership, they are drawing on personalized data to mobilize high-potential students to matriculate and succeed at a match institution. The learning lab will test other hypotheses related to virtual advising and other ways to support high-potential, on-track, low-income students (defined as below top 10% but within the top 45%, and on-track for success in a four-year college based on PSAT/SAT score).

With the class of 2019, the partnership will target a total possible pool of up to 200,000 students nationally (130,000 on-track, low-income students and 70,000 on-track, moderate-income students) and an additional pool of 11,000 military dependent students. CAC and the College Board will test direct-to-student models to draw on personalized data to propel students to identify, apply to, and enroll in a college that is a good fit for them academically, socially, and financially. The learning lab will be a bed of innovation and will allow CAC to test many of their current programs with an expanded population (using data from the College Board) with the aim of producing measurable results, identifying scalable solutions that can serve a broader population, and sharing learnings with the research and direct-service communities to impact and inform the larger college access field on the methods and interventions that prove most effective.