Achieving the Dream

Galveston College is proud to be part of Achieving the Dream: Community Colleges Count, a multiyear national initiative to improve student success in community colleges. The initiative is particularly concerned about student groups that have traditionally faced significant barriers to success, including minority and low-income students.

Funding provided through Achieving the Dream (AtD) enables Galveston College to enhance faculty development and facilitate innovative learning. Faculty and staff will receive training on the proper administration of placement tests, advising, diversity issues and developmental education. In addition to the training, faculty will be given the opportunity on an annual basis to receive mini-grants, a maximum of $1,500 per project, to fund ideas and projects designed to improve, advance, and enrich student learning. Mini-grants will encourage faculty to use innovative instructional techniques. The College's AtD initiative is focused on the following intervention strategies:

Intervention Strategy #1: Successful Student Transition (Orientation, Student Success Seminars, Learning Framework Courses) 

Intervention Strategy #2: Emotional Intelligence (Phase II: Embedding of EI in Dev Ed - English 0301)

 Intervention Strategy #3: Developmental Education (Increased Success Rates in Dev Ed Math)

 Galveston College is dedicated to the success of our students. Through additional training of faculty and staff and the implementation of innovative instructional techniques, students will acquire the skills to successfully accomplish their educational goals.

 AtD Core Team

Dr. Phyllis Mingus Pepin* Vice President of Student Services
Dr. Cissy Matthews Vice President of Instruction
Dr. Deanna Antosh Director of Institutional Effectiveness & Research
Elizabeth Johnson Chair of Math and Sciences
Beverly Gammill Instructor/Coordinator of English/Emotional Intelligence Coordinator
Araceli Lopez Student Activities Coordinator

 AtD Data Team

Dr. Deanna Antosh* Director of Institutional Effectiveness & Research
Dr. Phyllis Mingus Pepin Vice President of Student Services
George Crossland Director of Information Technology
Dr. Kimberly Ellis Registrar/Director of Admissions
Ron Crummedy Director of Financial Aid
Jo Ann Buentello Institutional Research Specialist


Funding for Achieving the Dream is provided by Lumina Foundation, KnowledgeWorks Foundation, and the Nellie Mae Education Foundation, Inc. Additional partnerships include American Association of Community Colleges, Community College Leadership Program (University of Texas Austin), Community College Research Center (Teachers College, Columbia University), Jobs for the Future, MDRC, and Public Agenda.Galveston College is grateful for the commitment that these organizations have made to ensure the success of community college students. 


  Gulf Coast Partners Achieving Student Success (GC PASS)

The Houston Endowment awarded Galveston College a $600,000 grant to implement success initiatives dedicated to increasing college-readiness among high school students and decreasing the need for developmental education. The grant is coordinated, directed, and evaluated by the University of Texas at Austin’s Community College Leadership Program and ground-level leadership for the project is provided by Houston A+ Challenge. Galveston College is one of eight Texas Gulf Coast community colleges selected to participate in the project.

The Gulf Coast Partners Achieving Student Success (GC PASS) initiative is a region-wide, collaborative effort between community colleges and selected independent school districts. The primary goals of GC PASS are to increase college readiness among high school graduates, ease transitions between high school and community college, and to increase student success in community college developmental courses. College readiness means a student has the ability to read, write, compute, and think critically at the collegiate level. The ultimate goal of the project is to ensure students persist through college to earn a postsecondary credential.

The Gulf Coast PASS project was born out of the success of the Achieving the Dream™(AtD) national initiative which was designed to help more community college students succeed – particularly underrepresented students (e.g. students of color, working adult learners, low-income students) who face unique barriers to academic success. The AtD initiatives emphasize that data-driven student achievement results are critical to significantly improving student success rates.

 In 2011, Galveston College was awarded Leader College Status by AtD. Galveston College increased developmental math success rates from 21 percent in fall 2006 to 58.6 percent in fall 2010. The improvement is associated with changes to the developmental math curriculum including increased contact hours and use of instructional software. These interventions reach 100 percent of developmental math students and 18.8 percent of all students.

Through a three-year cycle, community college/K-12 district faculty alignment teams will meet regularly to plan, implement, evaluate, and refine comprehensive projects aimed at improving college readiness, transitions, and student success. Galveston College is paired with Galveston Independent School District’s Ball High School to align curriculum and enhance teaching techniques that help prepare students for college while they are still in high school. Assessment scores, grades and other data will be tracked to evaluate students’ progress through high school and college. Galveston College and GISD are committed to and agree to share all requested student data to permit cohort tracking of student progression. According to the Texas State Initiatives (TSI), ensuring students are prepared to tackle college-level courses helps to eliminate the need for one or more semesters of developmental courses that may prolong academic progress and graduation.

Updated 7/24/2012 - Content Author vmatthew