Wyoming Imperative

In an Oct. 31, 2011 Wyoming Community College report on Remediation, Retention and Graduation Rates to the Joint Education and Appropriations Interim Committee (2011) community colleges committed to the following goals in order to decrease the time to degree or certificate for at-risk students: 

  1. Establish infrastructure to provide high-risk students a customized pathway to successful completion of college level math, English, and reading intensive courses, within one year. 
  2. Increase the completer success rate in college level math, English and reading intensive courses for high-risk students by 5 percent by the end of two years. 
  3.  Increase the degree and certificate completion rate for high-risk students by 5 percent by the end of three years. 

In 2012, Governor Matt Mead accepted an invitation for Wyoming to join the Complete College America Alliance of States in order to increase the number of students successfully completing college. A team was assembled with representation from the Governor’s Office, Wyoming Community Colleges, University of Wyoming, the Legislature, and employers to address this effort. Participation in Complete College America requires the state, through its team, to: 

  1. Set Completion Goals 
  2. Develop Action Plans and Move Key Policy Levers 
  3. Collect and Report Common Measures of Progress 

In addition to joining the Complete College America initiative, Wyoming has adopted Common Core Standards for the K-12 system. According to the Common Core State Standards Initiative, “These standards define the knowledge and skills students should have within their K-12 education careers so that they will graduate high school able to succeed in entry-level, credit-bearing academic college courses and in workforce training programs. The standards: 

  • Are aligned with college and work expectations; 
  • Are clear, understandable, and consistent; 
  • Include rigorous content and application of knowledge through high-order skills; 
  • Build upon strengths and lessons of current state standards; 
  • Are informed by other top performing countries, so that all students are prepared to succeed in our global economy and society; and 
  • Are evidence-based 

Fully preparing students through their K-12 educational pathway for college and career readiness, while providing clear standards for postsecondary alignment, helps support a larger goal of increased college completion.