The Ohio Education Research Center (The Ohio State University) evaluated the Ohio College Guides program which places AmeriCorps volunteers in school-based, college access programs. Student-level records from the school district as well as the Ohio Department of Education and National Student Clearinghouse were used to evaluate the impact of the college guides program.
The goal of this study was to analyze the impact of College Now Greater Cleveland College Guides on postsecondary educational outcomes for students in the Cleveland Metropolitan School District.
The study identified the primary outcome of interest as the college enrollment of high school graduates from the Cleveland Metropolitan School District (CMSD) for the period 2015 to 2019, who were served by AmeriCorps College Guides during that period.
The evaluation found that:
- There was no statistically significant difference in college enrollment rates between those served by the AmeriCorps college guides and those who were not (group receiving AmeriCorps services, 38% college enrollment rate, matched sample who didn’t receive services, 37%, and full comparison group who didn’t receive services, 36%.)
- The 290 students served by AmeriCorps who enrolled in college in the year after high school were significantly less likely to graduate than matched sample peers (21% versus 31%).
- The report explores non-AmeriCorps program related findings for college enrollment, completion, and persistence beginning on page 8. These findings present various cohort effects (i.e., variations between different high school graduation classes) that may have impacted the evaluation’s findings. For example, any potential impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic may vary depending on where students were on their educational path.