Forsyth Tech’s new Strategic Plan – Transformation – has a goal of making Forsyth Tech a better college that better serves its students. This vision received a big boost in 2014 when the college applied for and received a U.S. Department of Education Title III grant of $2.5 million over five years.
The Title III grant program helps institutions of higher education become more self-sufficient and expand their capacity to serve low-income students by providing funds to improve and strengthen academic quality, institutional management and fiscal stability. Forsyth Tech is already hard at work, utilizing these funds in two innovative ways:
Center for Transformative Learning (CTL): The college is establishing a sustainable Center for Transformative Learning (CTL) designed to promote student achievement through professional development for faculty members. The CTL will create faculty learning communities and training opportunities based on the principles of current adult learning theory, incorporating the most up-to-date research-based technologies and instructional methodologies.
The ongoing training of faculty in new and innovative teaching methods is designed to support student learning. Included in the CTL initiative will be completing the installation of a wireless network throughout the college and dedicating classroom learning space at the college’s five centers to elevate the presence of CTLs as a resource for student achievement.
Academic Early Warning System: The college is also creating an academic early warning system and developing coaching processes that will help identify and assist students at risk of failing basic, gateway courses. Faculty will use early-alert software to identify at-risk students and provide appropriate interventions to help those students successfully complete their college degree.
There is little doubt that this Title III grant will facilitate Forsyth Tech’s transformation by increasing the academic achievement, persistence, retention and engagement of at-risk students.