About the Black Hawk Local College Access Network

Who We Are

A group of cross-sectional community leaders committed to increasing access, enrollment, and completion of postsecondary certificates and college degrees. We believe that increasing local education attainment rates is critical to growing a strong economy and healthy community. Our mission is in alignment with the Future Ready Iowa Goal: that by 2025 70% of Iowans will have an education beyond high school. By 2025 68% of Iowa jobs will require training and education beyond high school. According to U.S. Census data, 40.7% of Black Hawk County residents (ages 25-64) hold an associate degree or higher. Those especially vulnerable to the achievement gap are those of minority, first-generation, and low-income status. Our vision of creating initiatives that will empower members of our community to achieve educational pathways toward workplace success will generate a stronger, more vibrant community. 

 

Our Mission:

To ignite and strengthen the belief that all people deserve access to higher education.

 

Our Vision:

Through unification, exploration, and innovation we will assist individuals in the pursuit and achievement of their educational pathways toward workplace success.

Our Goals:

  • To increase FAFSA completion rates from 53.4% to 60% by 2022 in Black Hawk County utilizing data from the FAFSA tracker. 

  • By 2022 a shared measurement system will be established to identify student intentions after high school in Black Hawk County.

  • Increase postsecondary educational attainment rates for nontraditional students in Black Hawk County to 54% by 2025. (FRI Goal).

Our Plan:

  • Create consistent methods to accurately measure students’ postsecondary intentions at all public high schools in Black Hawk County

  • Decrease outstanding student loan debt by generating avenues of monetary resources along with creating awareness of existing resources  

  • Increase educational opportunities for financial literacy and financial aid awareness

  • Coordinate and enhance programs, services, and resources that help students pursue postsecondary educational opportunities

  • Promote community awareness on what the FAFSA is, why it’s important, and how to complete the form 

  • Create incentives for community implementation of FAFSA completion strategies

  • Increase the level of student support with navigating the bureaucracy when preparing for and transitioning to higher education 

  • Increase the knowledge and availability of postsecondary resources available to students prior to exiting from high school and arriving on campus

  • Create an awareness of the availability of resources available to pursue and complete higher education for nontraditional students