Executive Summary

An evaluation of the College-Community Connections initiative was conducted from 2006 to 2008 by Metis Associates, a consulting firm specializing in education and human services evaluation. The results yielded outcome findings about the impact and influence of the initiative and highlighted a number of effective features of partnerships that achieved positive effects. Data to support the results were collected from interviews, focus groups, surveys of program participants and stakeholders, observations of program activities, and reviews of syllabi and other program materials, including examples of student work from the program.

Program Outcomes

  1. The College-Community Connections programs provided opportunities for secondary students to experience college life and helped them gain a stronger understanding of the academic and social expectations of college students.

  2. Participating youth were exposed to new ideas, experiences, and academic disciplines and learned about the different opportunities and perspectives offered in a liberal education.

  3. By experiencing authentic college-level instruction, students learned and applied skills that are essential to helping them prepare for the academic demands of college.

  4. The experiences intensified students’ interest in attending college and motivated them to work harder in high school to gain admission in the college of their choice.

  5. The programs benefited both the higher education and community organization partners.