Achieving the Dream (ATD) was launched nationally in 2004 with funding from Lumina Foundation for Education.
The initiative emphasizes use of data to identify effective practices, improve student success rates and close achievement gaps, while providing the necessary support to implement strategies designed to help more students earn degrees, complete certificates or continue their studies by transferring to other institutions.
More information about Achieving the Dream, including a full list of participants, can be found online at www.achievingthedream.org.
Lake Michigan College’s Achieving the Dream History
In June of 2007, LMC received a $50,000 start-up grant to plan and launch Achieving the Dream, thus becoming eligible to apply for the implementation grant. With funding from the start-up grant, the College spent a year examining student data in many different categories and working to develop a thorough plan to address the identified areas of need.
In September, 2008, the College announced that it had received a $400,000 implementation grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation and the national ATD initiative for its proposal to improve student retention and success. LMC is just one of 84 community colleges nationwide to participate in this program.
Lake Michigan College’s New Student Cohorts
Achieving the Dream focuses on increasing the success of new students, whether they are new to higher education, or just new to Lake Michigan College. Each year the department of Institutional Research collects data on this incoming cohort, and updates the academic history of all previous cohorts. In Fall 2008, 1,655 (42 percent) of all enrolled students were part of an Achieving the Dream cohort.