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USG looks to more students ready for college
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Getting more students ready for college and able to complete college has led University System of Georgia officials to look closely at all areas involved in this effort, including the efforts directed at the Board of Regents level.

To better coordinate the work, USG officials have renamed and refocused the regents’ existing Office of Educator Preparation, Innovation, and Research. It will now be known as the Office of Educational Access and Success (OEAS), and continues to be headed by Dr. Lynne Weisenbach, vice chancellor for Educational Access and Success.

“This new name incorporates regent’s participation with Complete College America and better describes the wide range of programs, initiatives, and partnerships that focus on enhancing college access and completion, improving the quality and the depth of educator preparation, and increasing the number and quality of STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) education students,” said Dr. David Morgan, USG interim executive vice chancellor and chief academic officer.

USG officials want to ensure a high level of coordination as the USG works with other educational partners at both the P-12 and university levels to meet workforce projections that by 2020, 61 percent of jobs will require some form of college education.

OEAS builds on four interconnected areas to advance its mission and objectives:

• College Access, Retention and Completion focuses on improving the readiness of P-12 students for college and creating better pathways and expanded options to students for higher education,

• Educator Preparation ensures that Georgia has enough quality teachers to meet current and future educational needs and that educators are distributed equitably throughout the State,

• STEM Education Effectiveness supports the preparation of Georgia’s STEM workforce, including P-12 STEM educators, and

• Policy Development and Dissemination works to strengthen key USG partnerships and advises on the leadership of national and state education initiatives.

Morgan says that OEAS does not work alone in these efforts. Serving as Chancellor Hank Huckaby’s implementation arm for the Alliance of Education Agency Heads, the OEAS works closely with the Georgia Department of Education, the Professional Standards Commission, the Technical College System of Georgia, and the Southern Regional Education Board, among many others.

Consistent with the USG’s emphasis on sustainability and prudent management, OEAS funding comes from a number of sources, including the state, as well as federal and foundation grants. Notable grant sources include the U.S. Department of Education, National Science Foundation, and Complete College America.

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