In October 2017, CUNY launched the Academic Momentum Campaign, a system-wide endeavor to improve undergraduate graduation rates over a three-year period. The campaign was structured as a University-wide initiative with clear goals in which CUNY Office of Academic Affairs monitored and reported on progress toward goals, facilitated communication, and organized convenings, and cross-functional college teams implemented local strategies that aligned the campaign with relevant initiatives at each college.
The original Academic Momentum Campaign was designed to focus on three strategies intended to drive students’ early momentum and subsequent completion: (1) increasing the rates at which students take and pass gateway math and English composition courses in their first year; (2) shifts in the messaging and institutional culture regarding how many credits students should attempt; and (3) improvements in the availability of clear and accurate degree maps for each major showing a realistic and timely path to a degree.
Academic Momentum 2.0
The next phase, Academic Momentum 2.0 (AcMo 2.0), adds a focus on maintaining momentum along a student’s entire transfer journey, from the associate degree through the baccalaureate degree. And while CUNY students transfer in all directions, for the purpose of AcMo 2.0, the proposed focus is on “vertical” transfers from the CUNY community college to the senior college.
For this new phase of the campaign, the following system-wide goals, which all colleges will contribute towards, are recommended; proposed institutional goals are included for review and approval.
- Double the six-year baccalaureate completion rate for associate freshmen (from the semester of enrollment in the associate program) from a baseline of 16.7% for the fall 2014 cohort to 33.4% for the fall 2024 cohort.
- Increase the three-year baccalaureate completion rate of transfer students with an associate degree (from the semester of enrollment in the bachelor’s program) by 10 percentage points, from a baseline of 50.9% for the fall 2017 cohort to 60.9% for the fall 2024 cohort.
Credit Accumulation Goals (to demonstrate movement towards graduation goals):
- Increase the percentage of full-time first-time freshmen in associate programs who earn 30 credits in the first year by 10 percentage points, from a baseline of 15.7% for the fall 2019 cohort to 25% for the 2024 cohort.
- Increase the percentage of full-time transfer students who earn 24 credits in the first year in the baccalaureate program by 15 percentage points, from a baseline of 59.7% for the fall 2019 cohort to 75% for the fall 2024 cohort.