Achieving the Dream was excited to hold its 2022 Data and Analytics Summit in person this September! The event included close to 250 attendees from over 80 colleges, including 26 Tribal colleges and universities (TCUs). From years of holding this event and hearing feedback from participating colleges, we know that annual event can help leaders and faculty change institutional mindsets about data, stimulate ideas for supporting college use of data, and network with peers. The 2022 Summit’s theme was “Creating Equitable and Inclusive Communities,” and attendees shared strategies for using data to foster access, momentum and economic mobility.
While virtual convenings have allowed broader participation in ATD events for the past few years, we also hear time and time again that participants of our in-person events appreciate the opportunity to remove themselves from their workplaces (and computers!) to wholly focus on learning and to think about how lessons might be applied to their contexts. Time and space to learn can help spur innovation and change.
This is the sixth year that the Data & Analytics Summit has included TCU-focused sessions, and the fifth year that it has included a complete parallel track of TCU concurrent sessions. While it is exciting that TCU participation has met the original intent of supporting TCUs through data capacity-building, along with ATD coaching, this participation has also enriched the overall summit as other colleges have also attended TCU-led sessions to learn more about their work — and to learn from their work. This year’s TCU-led sessions included sessions on supporting faculty use of data, early outreach and belonging, and indigenizing measures of student success from tribal languages or Native American studies courses.
Since joining the ATD Network in 2017, 32 TCUs have made major strides in data production, dissemination, and interpretation. Most have hired full-time staff dedicated to these efforts. Some have changed their student information systems for more user-friendly platforms and all have placed data in the hands of more people at the college to foster a culture of evidence and inquiry. One TCU, Fond du Lac Tribal and Community College, is now an ATD Leader College.
Other colleges in the Network have had the opportunity to hear from diverse voices, including Indigenous voices, which can help them better understand the higher education landscape and serve their students, including Indigenous students. Congratulations to the TCU community on all of your data capacity-building progress, and thank you for enhancing the Data Summit and community college learning along the way.