With most community college students hoping to transfer to a four-year college, statistics show that most don’t transfer and only half of those who do, finish. The Kaplan Educational Foundation, headed by Nancy Lee Sanchez, is working to help community college students transfer successfully to universities and earn bachelor’s degrees.
Interview with Nancy Lee Sánchez, the Executive Director of Kaplan Educational Foundation.
The following is the pre-interview with Nancy Lee Sánchez. Be sure to watch the recorded interview above.
What is the problem you solve and how do you solve it?
81% of first-time beginning community college students from the bottom income quartile aspire to complete a bachelor’s degree, but only 21% transfer to four year institutions within 5 years, and only 10% attain a bachelor’s degree. (Horn & Skomsvold (2011); Shapiro et al. (2013)). Bachelor’s degree holders earn 31% more than those with an associate’s degree and 84% more than those with just a high school diploma. (Carnevale, Rose, and Cheah, 2011).
Solution 1: Kaplan Leadership Program:
The Foundation’s support begins early in a student’s associate’s degree studies and continues through the completion of a bachelor’s degree. Financial assistance includes scholarships and additional funding to assist with other educational and living expenses. All Kaplan Leadership Scholars are provided with academic advising, transfer admissions, career counseling and job placement support, and admissions guidance for graduate and professional programs. The KLP’s curriculum was developed to target the academic, financial and personal/social development of its participants reflecting our belief that the whole student must be addressed to effect long-term success.
Solution 2: Transfer Initiative Program:
In 2017, KEF launched the Transfer Initiative Program (TIP) to increase the number of students reached. In addition to the 7 KLP Scholars accepted each year, all KLP finalists (up to 15 students) are invited to become TIP Scholars and receive transfer admissions advisement, and application support through individualized writing support and financial support to cover the following costs: transcript fees, financial aid application fees and testing fees.
Solution 3: Your 2018 Guide to College Transfer:
Also in 2017, KEF expanded its mission by publishing Your 2018 Guide to College Transfer, A comprehensive handbook profiling top schools for transfer across the United States, serving as a resource for students, parents, and advisors to navigate the entire transfer process, from application to enrollment.
Additional Resources: yourguidetocollegetransfer.org
More about Kaplan Educational Foundation:
The Kaplan Educational Foundation (KEF), an independent 501(c)3 nonprofit public charity, seeks to eliminate barriers to education for overlooked and underserved students and develop them as leaders for the American workforce and their communities. KEF launched the Kaplan Leadership Program (KLP) in 2006 to do just that. KLP is a unique and trailblazing model that addresses the needs of the ‘whole’ student, successfully transferring low-income Black, Latino and Native American students of exceptional academic merit from New York City’s community colleges to top four-year universities throughout the country, while preparing them to succeed academically and assume leadership roles in their professions and communities. Our Kaplan Scholars receive a comprehensive array of financial and academic support, transfer admissions advising and leadership skills development.
For-profit/Nonprofit: 501(c)3 Nonprofit
Revenue model: The Kaplan Educational Foundation (KEF) is a 501(c)(3) public charity. In addition to receiving donations, KEF recently published a book, “Your 2018 Guide to College Transfer,” and 100% of the proceeds go to KEF.
Scale: KEF has a full-time staff of three employees who focus on changing the lives of a small number of students in a big way. Through the Kaplan Leadership Program, we have accepted 69 students. 24 students are active within the program (currently enrolled in either an associate’s or bachelor’s degree program) and 38 alumni have successfully earned their bachelor’s degrees. Results from the program include: 87% of all Kaplan Scholars earn a bachelor’s degree. 100% of our Alumni are employed full-time at jobs in their fields of study or in graduate school. Over 30% of alumni are in or have completed graduate school.
Nancy Lee Sánchez’s bio:
Nancy Lee Sánchez, M.A. is the Executive Director for the Kaplan Educational Foundation. As the founding Director for Academic Advisement and Student Development, Nancy was responsible for the design and implementation of the Kaplan Leadership Program model.
Sánchez has over 18 years of expertise providing greater access to higher education, improving the college experience, and supporting leadership among low-income, underrepresented, and nontraditional students through collaborative partnerships and services that directly target factors affecting degree-attainment gaps.
Sánchez’s own educational journey started at Kingsborough Community College, where she earned her associate’s degree in early childhood education. She went on to earn a bachelor’s degree in education from Long Island University and a master’s in sociology from Brooklyn College. As a 2014 National Hispanic Executive Leadership Fellow, Nancy completed an Executive Leadership Program at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government and a Leadership Development Program at the Center for Creative Leadership. Born in Las Piedras, Puerto Rico, Sánchez currently resides in Brooklyn.
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