Feature Article in Hispanic Outlook


Using Data and Scorecards to Achieve Equity and Improve Graduation Rates

Written by Gary Stern

“Imagine if some students had to run 100 yards to reach the end zone in football, but minority students had to race 200 yards to get there.”



Overcoming this uneven playing field in education drives the purpose of the Center for Urban Education (CUE) at the University of Southern California. Estela Mara Bensimon, a professor of higher education at USC, secured $900,000 from the USC Provost’s Office in 1999 to launch CUE and get the ball rolling.

For the last 18 years, it has consulted with over 100 community colleges and four-year colleges to produce equity in student outcomes and help minority students achieve undergraduate degrees and overcome a variety of obstacles. It employs its proprietary Equity Scorecard to “identify problems, develop intervention and implement equity goals to increase retention, transfer and graduation rates for under-represented racial and ethnic groups,” declares its mission statement…

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