In the News: Dougherty Family College Works to Close Educational Attainment Gap

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Inside Higher Education spoke with Dougherty Family College Dean Buffy Smith about how the two-year college is the University of St. Thomas’ solution to closing the achievement gap. She also discussed how its scholars are placed in paid internships, supported by a professional development curriculum within the first-year experience course.

“If the educational attainment gap is a structural problem, to solve or eliminate that educational attainment gap will require a structural solution,” Smith said. “It’s all intentionally designed to address the barriers … that scholars from underresourced communities face in terms of attaining their degree.”

From the article:

Dougherty’s model pulls from Arrupe College at Loyola University Chicago, with a focus on financial accessibility, culturally sustaining pedagogy, relationships between peers and mentors, and relevant internship experience for scholars.

Of the (DFC associate degree) graduates, 77% are enrolled in a bachelor’s degree program or earned their bachelor’s degree.