In the News: Can These New Colleges Help Solve Higher Education’s Equity Problem?

In EdSurge, Allison Dulin Salisbury describes a new type of college, sometimes called a hybrid college, that aims to help low-income students earn college degrees.

Loosely defined as affordable programs with strong learning and career outcomes, hybrid colleges often share three design principles: intensive wrap-around student support that directly meets student needs; digital learning programs (often competency-based); and sustainable funding that does not ask students to carry significant debt. These programs aim to support students who face financial or academic stresses, especially low-income, first-generation students who are not well served by the postsecondary system.

Many of these new models are the result of partnerships with College for America, a low-cost, competency-based, online degree program run by Southern New Hampshire University. Through SNHU’s Community Partnerships Program, a Hybrid College offers personalized coaching and advising, connections with employers (and jobs), peer relationships, and other student support services to complement SNHU’s online curriculum. The two partners share in the revenue.

Jon Marcus wrote about one such college, Match Beyond, in “A New Path to a College Degree” in the Spring 2017 issue of Education Next.

— Education Next

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