Pierce College joined Achieving the Dream (ATD) in 2012 and we have experienced a number of successes, with the support of our ATD Leadership and Data coaches, over the last 10 years. The focus of our ATD work has progressed through the years but has always supported our mission to create quality educational opportunities for a diverse community of learners to thrive in an evolving world.

group of students smiling outdoors

In 2020, we introduced a design thinking structure and challenged ourselves to bring this kind of thinking to our ATD work and the development of intervention proposals. We appreciate all of the thought and hard work that went into each proposal and are excited to support each Priority Design Group in their work this year!

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Design Groups

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  • Induction and Student Supports for Systemically Non-Dominant Students

    We focus on students’ experiences with Pierce College, beginning with their time as prospective students, and strategize ways to remove barriers to equity early in the student journey, in collaboration with key stakeholders.

  • Inclusive Pedagogy for Systemically Non-Dominant Students

    We collate and develop resources and materials to support the implementation of inclusive pedagogies in the classroom, to include experiential and active learning, in collaboration with various stakeholders.

  • Aspirational Career Exploration, Planning, and Advising for Systemically Non-Dominant Students

    Drawing on recent publications and tools developed by CCRC, we collaborate with students, faculty, staff, and community stakeholders to advance existing projects and programs that center systemically non-dominant students in the exploration of career pathways. Specifically, we develop strategies in collaboration with partners and stakeholders to ensure guided exploration of career pathways.

  • Embedded Learning Support Services for Systemically Non-Dominant Students

    We focus on researching and recommending equitized academic supports in the classroom and throughout the student journey, making them accessible to systemically non-dominant students.

  • Community Outreach, Recruitment, and Engagement in Systemically Non-Dominant Communities

    We create meaningful partnerships with community-based organizations that center and support our systemically non-dominant students.

student raising hand in class

Get Involved

Are you a Pierce College employee interested in joining an ATD Priority Design Group? Fill out our interest form today, or contact Nicole Dickens at ndickens@pierce.ctc.edu for more information.

ATD Interest Form

Pierce College Achieving the Dream Statement

Achieving the Dream provides a framework and structure supporting mission fulfillment by centering our systemically non-dominant (Jenkins, 2018) students in all areas of our decision making as we eliminate areas of inequity, providing space for:

  1. Ongoing analysis, revision, and development of student success and equity metrics that drive prioritization of our institutional work.
  2. Innovations that interrogate and transcend historical departmental and divisional policies, processes, and attitudes, thereby removing systemic barriers to student goals. 
  3. Implementation of the college’s Guided Pathways work plan to specifically address pathways progress for our systemically non-dominant student populations.
  4. Alignment of innovations with college resources to ensure their feasibility and success.
  5. Accountability of innovations by participating college leadership, faculty, and staff.

Jenkins, D. (2018). A Critical Lens to Rethinking Power, Privilege, and Inequity Language: "Systemically Dominant" and "Systemically Non-Dominant". Share the Flame LLC: Camas, WA. www.shareflame.com

Achieving the Dream National Organization


ATD National Website

Achieving the Dream Timeline


  • Selected as an ATD Network school
    • Pierce College Selected into the Achieving the Dream Network





  • Administered the ATD ICAT
  • ATD OER Degree Initiative Grant