College Board, Business Innovation Factory Join Forces to Advance Innovation in Education

The College Board Advocacy & Policy Center and the Business Innovation Factory today announced a joint effort to explore new ideas and identify innovative solutions to improve the student experience and help ensure that students from all backgrounds have the opportunity to succeed in college and beyond.

College Board logoThe first phase of the collaboration between the College Board Advocacy & Policy Center and BIF will leverage BIF's Student Experience Lab to increase awareness of the challenges facing young men of color and develop solutions to help improve the educational experiences of these students. This effort follows the release of the College Board's report The Educational Crisis Facing Young Men of Color in January 2010.

BIF's Student Experience Lab was created to put the student and the student experience back at the center of our country's efforts to transform education. The lab uses direct student engagement to gather insights into the student experience, and video, audio, photography and narrative to highlight the human, environmental and systems-level factors that most influence student success. BIF's approach enables stakeholders to see the experience through the lens of the student and appreciate the dynamics of the whole system. It also allows them to readily identify opportunities for innovation and interventions.

"We are thrilled to welcome the College Board into BIF's community," said BIF Founder and Chief Catalyst Saul Kaplan. "The College Board shares our core value that the student voice and the student experience are central to our ongoing conversations about innovation in education. I know that they will be an important addition to our community and a great contributor to our work."

The timing of the BIF/College Board collaboration aligns with the recent launch of the College Board Advocacy & Policy Center. The overarching purpose of the Center is to increase the number of students who earn a college degree and who are prepared to succeed in the 21st century, with a special focus on underserved populations — especially low-income students, students of color and first-generation college students. Through a program of research, balanced policy analysis and advocacy, the Center will develop innovative approaches and solutions to the most pressing challenges facing education today.

"We welcome the opportunity to work closely with BIF on this initiative," said Christen Pollock, executive director of the College Board Advocacy & Policy Center. "Our goal is to deepen understanding of the educational experiences of young men of color and identify actionable solutions that can begin to erase the disparities in educational attainment for these students."

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