2021 Texas Pathways Award Winners

The Texas Success Center is excited to announce the winners of the 2021 Texas Pathways Awards. The Center honored the exemplary work of six colleges for their implementation and scaling of guided pathways. Awardees were celebrated in Dallas, Texas at the Texas Pathways Institute: Onboarding Reimagined with 440 attendees representing Texas colleges statewide. This year’s recipients include Central Texas College, Kilgore College, Tyler Junior College, Texarkana College, Temple College, and Ranger College. In addition to these six institutions, twelve colleges were recognized for their outstanding innovation in the Texas Reskilling and Upskilling through Education (TRUE) program.

Learn more about these exemplar institutions below.


Texas Reskilling & Upskilling through Education

Colleges recognized for TRUE innovation: Alamo Colleges District, Amarillo College, Austin Community College, Brazosport College, Dallas College, Del Mar College, McLennan Community College, Midland College, Northeast Texas Community College, Paris Junior College, San Jacinto College, and Tarrant County College.


Excellence in Mapping Pathways to Student End Goals - Kilgore College

Kilgore College excels in practices and student outcomes associated with mapping pathways to a student’s end goals. As 3rd in the state for the percentage of students earning 30 or more college credit hours in their first year, Kilgore College stands out for its well-designed programs, detailed information to students on their website, program maps, and the alignment of mathematics within each program of study. Kilgore College has implemented an annual program review process to track employment outcomes on an annual basis. Recent website updates also allow Kilgore students to know which courses they should take and in what sequence. These practices drive improvement and enable students to achieve their postsecondary goals.


Excellence in Helping Students Choose and Enter a Path - Tyler Junior College

Tyler Junior College excels in practices and student outcomes associated with pathway entry and has made notable progress since 2019 in several key endeavors. To begin with, the college established Career Exploration a resource that enables students to explore career options, choose a program of study, and develop a full-program plan as soon as possible. This aide is available to all students via Career Planning and the college’s website. Tyler Junior College also works with high schools to motivate and prepare students to enter college-level coursework in a program of study when they enroll. Faculty have partnered with tutoring centers to design interventions for students to ensure they succeed in “gateway” English courses by the end of their first year. Furthermore, Tyler Junior College’s Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP) is dedicated to developing an effective model of academic success coaching to provide support to academically underprepared students tailored to their major program areas. Scaling of the QEP across Tyler Junior College is now in progress.


Excellence in Keeping Students on the Path - Temple College

Temple College excels in practices and student outcomes associated with keeping students on the path to earning a credential. Temple College has implemented an appreciative/holistic advising model at scale. Advisors regularly meet with students to monitor which program of study they are enrolled in, and how far along the student is toward completing the program requirements. Advisors and students are alerted when students are at risk of falling off their program plans and have policies and support in place, such as CRM Advise and success coaches, to intervene in ways that help students get on back toward their academic goals. Incoming students are provided assistance to ensure course scheduling is optimized to ensure that students earn a credential or enter an alternative program without losing college credits. These exemplar practices at Temple College have provided entering students early success in their first-college level reading and writing courses which will enable students to stay on their path.


Excellence in Ensuring Students are Learning - Ranger College

Ranger College excels in practices and student outcomes associated with student learning. Ranger College has incorporated program learning outcomes across all disciplines and aligned programs of study and requirements for success in further education and employment outcomes targeted by each program. Rubrics are utilized to ensure active learning is taking place across programs, encouraging students to think critically, solve meaningful problems, and work and communicate effectively with others. Ranger College provides experiential learning opportunities through projects, internships, clinicals, and service-learning. Ranger College helps students document their learning by sending letters from the Phi Theta Kappa Advisor each semester to universities. In addition, the college is working to assess the effectiveness of educational practices through nationally-recognized student surveys to spur institutional improvement. Ranger College’s focus on student learning is evident in longitudinal data. Ranger college is among the top colleges in Texas for building momentum in credit accumulation.

Excellence in Implementation and Scaling - Texarkana College

Texarkana College has a strong institutional commitment to Guided Pathways and is an exemplar in helping students accumulate meaningful college credits toward a credential. Program pathways are well designed, with program maps linked to students’ careers and transfer aspirations. Further, program learning outcomes are embedded into program maps. Texarkana College utilizes faculty expertise to design course sequences to ensure courses with prerequisites are planned appropriately, math and English requirements are completed as quickly as possible, and courses with varying levels of difficulty are evenly distributed. In their first semester, first-time-in-college (FTIC) students at Texarkana College, including dual credit students, complete a Learning Framework course that includes a career project and the identification of a major or career area of interest. All dual credit students, from all partnering ISDs, select a major at 12 hours. Texarkana College has an institutionalized advising model, with a roadmap for advisors to connect students to internal and community resources. Advising and career exploration opportunities at Texarkana College span pathways from adult education & literacy to developmental education.

Texas Pathways Rising Star - Central Texas College

At Central Texas College, guided pathways essential practices have scaled quickly over the past three years, resulting in systemic practice across the institution. This significant improvement over time exemplifies the commitment of Central Teas College leadership, staff, and faculty to implement a student-centered approach to building strong academic and career pathways. To begin with, each program area has an “Explore Programs” page with information on careers inclusive of a Pathway document that maps out the progression from certificates to degrees to upper-level transfer. These program maps include degree plans, presented by semester with courses laid out in a coherent sequence. Once enrolled, all first-time degree or certificate-seeking students are placed on a degree plan. The students are encouraged to visit the Career Center to explore career options. Each Advisor is teamed up with one or more instructional departments and remains in constant contact regarding program changes, and serves to further assist the students. Students can easily see how far they have come and what they need to do to complete their program. Student success staff members and teams, advisors, and faculty can monitor milestone progress and respond to retention alerts for academics and other areas of concern for students. Lastly, reports and assessment tools are utilized to determine the college’s performance and to provide insight into best practices and measures that can be used to improve educational services, instructional practices, and faculty professional development.