The New York Times Cites Georgia State University for Student Success

In an article published by The New York Times, writer David L. Kirp cites Georgia State University’s reach and focus on urban education in relation to student success. The article states:

A decade ago, Georgia State University — racially segregated until the 1960s and a stone’s throw from the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s birthplace — was a poor-performing, big urban institution with low graduation rates and yawningly wide racial gaps. But even as the student body has become poorer and more ethnically and racially diverse, the overall graduation rate has climbed to 56 percent from 41 percent.

Even more remarkably, minority students, first-generation students and low-income students with federal Pell grants are earning degrees at a higher rate than their white peers.

Georgia State didn’t “solve” its dropout problem by recruiting better-pedigreed students. It found a model for the students they had. “Despite the conventional wisdom, demographics are not destiny,” Timothy Renick, the vice president for enrollment management and student success, told me. “Rather than blaming the students, we took a hard look in the mirror.”

Rewriting the script of failure has meant identifying roadblocks. That started with data crunching millions of grades to spot problems Georgia State hadn’t even known about.

Read the full article here »