Ivy Tech Community College awarded 25,803 certificates, technical certificates and associate degrees to more than 18,000 students in academic year 2017-2018. This increase in completion of credentials is more than 4,500 over the previous academic year and represents a 22 percent overachievement of the 2018 strategic plan goal. Credentials awarded in high-demand industries saw the largest percentages of year over year growth which include: information technology at 75 percent; business, logistics and supply chain at 45 percent; advanced manufacturing at 42 percent; and healthcare at 18 percent.
A sizeable portion of the credentials were technical certificates, which have increased by 56 percent since 2016. The increase reflects an alignment with workforce needs through employer-driven programs and intentional focus on students earning stackable credentials. Stackable credentials are short-term certificates and technical certificates which create a pathway to an associate degree.
“There has never been a more important time to surpass our completion goal as Indiana employers are seeking qualified, credentialed employees to fill high-wage jobs,” said Sue Ellspermann, president, Ivy Tech Community College. “We appreciate our partnership with employers as we develop together the short-term certificates, technical certificates, and associate degrees needed in the workplace. Earning short-term credentials, which stack within an associate degree program, provides students with an immediate pathway to begin a career while continuing their associate or bachelor’s degree, in fields where employers are eager for talent.”
The credential increase can also be attributed to students earning their credential and transferring to a four-year institution to pursue a bachelor’s degree. As Indiana’s community college, Ivy Tech has transfer agreements with all Indiana public universities and offers seamless transfer programs ranging from teacher education to STEM programs. Specifically, the College’s “Transfer as a Junior” program saw a 187 percent increase in earned associate degrees academic year over year. Transfer as a Junior is a program option where students earn the associate degree then transfer to a four-year partner with junior status, upon meeting the receiving institution’s admissions requirements.
Ivy Tech confers more associate degrees than any other community college in the nation. In academic year 2017-2018, the College awarded 9,067 associate degrees, which remained constant with the previous academic year.
“Ivy Tech Community College remains committed to both students who will enter the workforce after graduating and those who are working toward their bachelor’s degree. Persistence and completion data confirm that students who earn an associate degree prior to transferring to a four-year institution are more successful in completing a bachelor’s degree and at a much lower cost,” Ellspermann continued. “As Indiana’s Community College, we are proud of the access Hoosiers have to our 19 campuses and 25 sites across the state.”
In January 2018, Ivy Tech launched its five-year strategic plan: “Our Communities. Your College,” where they set a vision of students earning 50,000 high-quality certifications, certificates, and degrees per year aligned with the needs of the workforce. This vision also reflects Ivy Tech’s contribution towards Indiana’s goal of increasing post-secondary attainment to 60 percent by 2025. The strategic plan comprises seven goals that focus on student success, recruitment and enrollment, completion, workforce alignment, employees, financial outcomes and communities. The number of credentials awarded in 2017-2018 is a metric in the “completion” goal.
To learn more about the strategic plan and metrics, visit strategicplan.ivytech.edu.