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Concurrent Enrollment Program (CEP)

In 2015, the Adult Basic Skills Department moved from a focus on completion of GED® credentials or basic skills improvement to preparing students for post-secondary training and employment. Local residents achieve lower than average educational attainment in our state, yet 61% of top priority job openings in the region require an associate’s degree or higher to be competitive. While hundreds of students were enrolling in the ABS program, less than 10% were enrolling in college within one year of completion.

To address this issue, the ABS Leadership Team helped create a Concurrent Enrollment Program (CEP) to increase and accelerate ABS transition to college. Students enrolled in ABE/GED® classes and college-level classes simultaneously and receive supplemental academic support and coaching. By spring of 2016, 36 students had passed one or two CEP classes, and earned a total of 127 college credits. In addition, 60% passed their GED® tests compared to 11% of non-CEP students, and 42% enrolled in college courses – more than double our historic rate. Results as of Fall 2019 show continued success: 202 students earned 3,321 credits with a 2.93-3.84 average GPA, 50% obtained a GED® credential, and 72% transitioned to college.

A student who participated in a 2016 concurrent enrollment focus group said, “The aspect that the college was actually willing to foot the bill for it was pretty big. I’m just now coming back from years of being out of school. I didn’t get my high school diploma or anything and didn’t exactly have the best track record. I’m just getting in and finding what I need to do and they’re actually offering to give me another leg up and to get ahead and start going on the journey that I want. That’s excellent, that’s great that somebody’s willing to invest in me, in a sense. That really encouraged me to go even more full-speed towards it.”

As Director of ABS, Julie Rossi solicited and received $25,000 a year in college tuition waivers from our budget committee and over $50,000 in private foundations and contributions. Last year, the ABS Department and its Concurrent Enrollment Program was selected as one of the top ten finalists in the nation for best practices in Instructional Programs and Services and she presented at the Community College Futures Assembly. In addition, the Coalition on Adult Basic Skills Education named the ABS Career Pathways Design, based on the Current Enrollment Program, one of the top 20 in the nation, and she secured a $250,000 SNAP award to fund CEP for SNAP eligible students and provide support for completion of CTE certificates and short-term training.

In 2019, the department secured an additional $250,000 in Integrated English and Civics Education Title II funding to provide English language support for English Language Learners in CEP.  The department is partnering with workforce to provide on-the-job training, service learning and apprenticeships to build resumes for living wage jobs in our community. As a member of the executive council for the Oregon Council of Adult Basic Skills Development, she has helped many other Oregon community colleges develop concurrent enrollment programs.

Outcomes of RCC Adult Basic Skills
Concurrent Enrollment Program (CEP)
As of Fall 2019

# Students # Credits completed in CEP Average GPA   of CEP students vs. non-CEP students % GED completion of CEP students vs. non-CEP students College enrollment following GED completion by CEP students vs. non-CEP students

202

3,321

2.93-3.84

50%

72%

 

 

2.74-3.26 for non-CEP students

9% for non-CEP students

7% for non-CEP students