Reorienting Adult Attainment

ProjectAttain! began as a collective action initiative with regional stakeholders serving as thought leaders, participating in focus groups, and supporting action teams. Through its incubation period at Sacramento State, ProjectAttain! partnered with the university to participate in and lead projects and programs that assess readiness and build capacity to help working-age adults and under-served populations complete their education.

Degrees When Due

Degrees When Due (DWD) is a higher education completion initiative through the Institute for Higher Education Policy (IHEP) that uses an equity lens and data-driven strategies to improve student completion rates.

By evaluating student transcripts, DWD teams identify students who met graduation requirements but didn’t receive their degree or stopped out within 15 units of graduation and guide them to and through completing their education.

The DWD California Cohort includes:

  • 7 CSUs (Chico, Fullerton, Long Beach, Northridge, Sacramento,
    San Francisco, Sonoma)
  • 3 individual community colleges (Fresno City, Sierra, Shasta)
  • 2 community college districts (Los Rios, Yuba)

ProjectAttain! is a leader in coordinating the DWD California Cohort, communicating information between the IHEP research team and California institutions, sharing DWD research, and connecting institutions with statewide coaching, resources, and best practices.

ProjectAttain! is working with InsideTrack to provide 500 working-age adults with in-depth college coaching to help them complete their education.

For institutions, this partnership improves enrollment, persistence, and completion through student-centered support that can adapt and scale to meet institutional needs.

For working-age adults, this partnership provides guidance and support from an unbiased source to help returning learners explore their college options, navigate administrative hurdles, and encourage them to finish what they started.

For the Capital Region, this partnership improves economic impact, equity, and access to opportunity for under-credentialed adults.


ProjectAttain! worked with Sacramento State to build HornetAttain! – a team of university-wide experts focused on supporting adult learners returning to Sac State to complete their degree.

As a ProjectAttain! partner, HornetAttain! achievement advisors guide comebackers through the Sac State system from enrollment to graduation, giving them a single point of contact with access to the full administrative and support services of the university and surrounding region.

As a champion of adult learners, HornetAttain! also:

  • Analyzes stopped-out student data
  • Identifies barriers to completion and potential interventions
  • Curates and promotes best practices to share with university stakeholders
  • Develops policies and processes to support stopped-out students
  • Collaborates and data shares with ProjectAttain! to support working-age adults seeking to complete a postsecondary certificate, credential, or degree

Strong adult-learner focused teams at our partner institutions improve comebacker pathways and build a collaborative network that fuels student success.

“I knew a degree completion program would help me finally complete
my bachelor’s program and realize my true potential in real time.”
– Veunta Dailey, ’17

Latino Adult Student

Success Academy (LASS)

The Latino Adult Student Success Academy (formerly known as HSI Adult Learner 360 Academy) is part of an ongoing initiative of the Council for Adult and Experiential Learning (CAEL) and Excelencia in Education to create pathways and improve higher education outcomes for Hispanic and Latino adult students.

As one of 15 Hispanic-Serving Institutions (HSIs) across the country participating in the three-year academy, Sacramento State receives professional development, tools, and research support to evaluate how it serves its adult students and identify and implement new policies and practices to drive better enrollment, persistence, and completion of Hispanic/Latino adults.

Accomplishments include:

  • Creating a cross-institutional network of individuals and departments collaborating to move the work of addressing adult learners’ needs forward at a faster pace
  • Developing quantitative and qualitative data collection systems to gain a broader knowledge of barriers that lead to stop-outs
  • Changing how Sacramento State uses data and makes decisions around barriers faced by adult learners and identifying potential interventions
  • Influencing paradigm shifts in viewing the intersectionality of Hispanic/Latino adult learners through a strengths-based model and using it to address barriers

ProjectAttain! is honored to participate in this life-changing work.