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Factors Contributing to the Three-Year Graduation Rate of Students in Technical Programs at an Urban Community College

Description: With an increasingly technological and competitive world economy, more jobs require employees to have achieved the advanced skills and knowledge gained only through postsecondary education. The data regarding the supply and demand between the workforce and higher education present a challenge for community college technical programs. These are the programs charged training the new workforce. An effort to increase the persistence and three-year graduation rate for technical students is one of Tarrant County College District's initiatives to prepare students for the workforce. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to determine factors that contribute to the three-year graduation rates of students enrolled in technical programs at the Northwest Campus of the Tarrant County College District. A quantitative survey approach was selected for this study targeting 191 technical students. The results of this study showed that females, who had established a degree plan and declared a major during the first two semesters at the urban community college campus under study, graduated in three years. The graduation rates for males in this study were lower than for females. Also, technical students who were 18 to 35 years old were more likely to graduate. Students who did not complete a degree plan in the first two semesters did not graduate in the three-year time frame. For the 77 respondents, students were more likely to graduate if they declared a major and established a degree plan. Implications for practice and recommendations for further study are provided.
Date: May 2009
Creator: Gantt, Aubra Jeanette