Podcast: Access, Success & Equity

Gerardo de los Santos and Mark Milliron

In episode 3 of Mark Milliron’s podcast series Catalytic Conversations, Milliron speaks with Gerardo de los Santos about the road from access to success in higher education, exploring the history of work done in the last 20 years to get more students – and more diverse ones at that – across the graduation stage at colleges and universities. The landscape is still shifting, and Milliron and de los Santos talk about some of the hot topics on the road ahead, including the road hazards.

De los Santos currently serves as senior fellow with Civitas Learning. Prior to that he was president of the League of Innovation where he served during the transition from the access agenda to the completion agenda across higher education.

In this podcast they discuss:

  • The fallacies that brought down the long-standing belief that enrollment growth equaled institution excellence.
  • The shift in the agenda in 2007, moving the country from a focus on access to completion, where success was not just measured by who and how many students were getting in the door, but also by how many were making it successfully through to completion.
  • The challenges a completion agenda created with regard to equity. Learn what moves had to be made to ensure that the scales weren’t tipped to have institutions only serving those most likely to complete.
  • The current landscape that increasingly recognizes that all students must successfully master a family of learning outcomes that equip them with skills that have labor market value – be it via a certificate, associate or bachelor degrees, and other credentials.

Listen as they share insights from the research and writings of John Roueche, George Baker, George Boggs, Terry O’Banion, Kay McClenney, and other voices that heralded the new age of recognizing that for institutions to be successful there must be access, success and equity combined, for none on them on their own are enough to provide our society with the workers and citizens needed in a knowledge-based economy/society.

Hear about the three big movers in education – reputation, regulations and resources, and understand why Milliron says the completion agenda has to be a game of chess not checkers. See where we are now and what to expect on the road ahead as we work collectively to better define what a student success pathway looks like for all students.

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