If community colleges were to find all the formerly enrolled students whose academic records qualify them for an associate degree and retroactively award them the credential, then the number of associate degrees awarded in the United States would increase by at least 12%. This projection by the Institute for Higher Education Policy is one reason why it is working with the Lumina Foundation for Education to roll out Project Win-Win. The initiative will help 35 community colleges and four-year institutions in six states track down these students and those who were near completion. These students would then become AA graduates, and boost national completion totals.
Other states like New Mexico are using this strategy for four year degree students, and offering a clear path to complete just a few missing credits.