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Position Description: Achieve Atlanta Research Fellow
Overview: Achieve Atlanta’s vision is that all students in Atlanta Public Schools (APS) will complete post-secondary education and obtain the full benefits that a higher education provides. To reach our vision, Achieve Atlanta is working to harness a broad array of community resources to dramatically increase the number of Atlanta Public School students graduating from a post-secondary institution. Currently, Achieve Atlanta is:
- Partnering with college advising providers with proven results to serve APS student while they are in high school;
- Establishing strategic formal relationships with post-secondary institutions that can successfully serve APS graduates, especially 1st generation and low income students;
- Providing scholarships to students in order to eliminate financial barriers; and
- Developing a plan to mobilize broad community support and further collaborate with effective initiatives that further college access and persistence in Atlanta.
Through these actions, Achieve Atlanta will help address the financial and social barriers students face in accessing and persisting through post-secondary education and help to :
- Enhance individual students’ ability to realize their own potential, especially for students traditionally underrepresented in post-secondary education;
- Support APS in continuing to institutionalize a culture that raises awareness of and encourages the pursuit of post-secondary education; and
- Create and ecosystem in Atlanta and with partner institutions that ensures college access and persistence for all students.
Ultimately Achieve Atlanta will be part of a system that transforms the lives of students, their families and the city of Atlanta by creating a highly educated and skilled population and, as a result, address the lack of economic upward mobility and income inequality in our city. Achieve Atlanta has set a goal to double the number of APS graduates completing a post-secondary degree or credential by 2025.
Organizational Culture: Achieve Atlanta is a values-driven organization and each team member grounds his/her work in the following core values:
Unwavering Belief: Belief in what’s possible-for our students and the school community that surrounds them- is the inspiration and fuel for everything we do.
Champion for Students: Our belief is backed by action. We never give up on students, and accept the charge to do whatever it takes to remove the barriers they face.
Expectation of Excellence: We expect excellence … from ourselves and from our community of stakeholders. This expectation shapes our ambition and sets our standard for execution day in and day out.
Intentional Collaboration: We don’t presume to have all the answers. We’re deliberate in our effort to tap the experience and knowledge of others as we work toward sustainable change.
Continuous Innovation: We understand to get different results we have to try new things. It’s important we always remain driven, humble, and nimble enough to pursue promising ideas.
Position Overview: The Research Fellow will conduct research on best methods for postsecondary advisors and coaches to use data to provide more personalized coaching. S/he is responsible for developing a thorough plan of action with supporting resources so that Achieve Atlanta staff, university support staff, and non-profit partner coaches can better use data to inform coaching.
Context: Nationwide, year-to-year college persistence drops the most from the first to second year of college. To address this gap, Achieve Atlanta provides student-level data to college and non-profit partners to inform proactive coaching and advising.
Specifically, Achieve Atlanta calculates a first-to-second year scholarship persistence likelihood based on student’s high school data. Additionally, Achieve Atlanta gathers other relevant high school data and surveys students on their social and emotional savviness (e.g., growth mindset, resilience, study habits, etc.,). All of these data are provided to partners prior to the school year. To help partners use the data, Achieve Atlanta facilitates a webinar to walk through the different components of the data in the file and some examples of how to best use the data.
Through conversations with partners, Achieve Atlanta has learned that partners are not using the data to its full potential to inform coaching and advising even though they had the data at the beginning of the term and the webinar. Two main reasons emerged from the conversations:
- Some partners review the data file initially but rarely refer to it again.
- Many partners requested more guidance on how to best use the data and additional clarity about its use throughout the year.
As a result of these conversations, Achieve Atlanta would like to provide additional support to partners to help them incorporate data into their coaching practices.
Job Responsibilities: The primary goals for a fellow working on this issue include the following:
- Conduct a root-cause analysis on the issue identified above;
- Research and find best practices around using predictive analytics and survey data to inform coaching support for students;
- Develop a plan of action for Achieve Atlanta to use with partners during the summer and beginning of fall term;
- Create resources to help partners have a clearer framework for how to use these data;
- Design and build a survey for partners to provide feedback on data access and use; and
- Conduct additional data analysis and meet support needs for the organization as assigned.
- Achieve Atlanta clearly understands best practices for using data in student advising, particularly in determining appropriate interventions to support student success;
- Achieve Atlanta has a clear plan to execute these practices and equip partners to apply these practices within their unique contexts;
- Partners have a better understanding of the data provided and how it can be used to strengthen advising practices; and
- Partners are frequently using the data to determine appropriate interventions and next steps with students.
- Strong written and verbal communication skills, particularly making complex or disparate ideas easy to understand;
- Ability to analyze data and research to draw conclusions that will improve processes and programming;
- Attention to detail;
- Ability to think critically and creatively and willingness to experiment with innovative ideas;
- Strong understanding of postsecondary education field, particularly for low income and first-generation college students;
- Ability to manage projects independently and work toward intended outcomes in a systematic manner;
- Commitment to learning and improvement; and
- Passion for Achieve Atlanta’s mission and values.
Education and Experience:
The ideal candidate will be a graduate student or recent master’s program graduate in a related field who has experience working with low-income and/or first-generation college students.
$20/hour for 10-15 hours per week up to 10 weeks between February 15-May 15 with possibility of extension into the summer (exact weeks within this window are flexible)
Please email a cover letter and resume to email@example.com .
Working at Achieve Atlanta
The Achieve Atlanta team’s success lies in tapping into a broad range of interests and expertise. An unwavering belief in the potential of every single student to achieve and succeed is what defines the team at Achieve Atlanta. Our CORE VALUES are woven into the fabric of everything we do and our COMMITMENT TO DIVERSITY + INCLUSION frames our work and makes us stronger. We’re looking for passionate, grounded individuals to join our team to expand our capability and accelerate our impact.
You might be a fit for our team if:
You are always looking for the power and potential in all students.
You are a lifelong learner and continuously strive for a better version of yourself.
You are a leader who consistently reflects on what you do and what you project.
You are a go-getter who will move mountains to do what is best for students and stakeholders.
You believe weekend naps, quality snacks, family time, and/or music festivals are essential to your success.