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Mission & Vision

We the playing field.

About CoFo

College Forward is a nationally-recognized, near-peer coaching organization that pairs recent college graduates with students to empower them to achieve their postsecondary goals. Our students are 2.5 times more likely to graduate than their unsupported peers.

Since 2003, College Forward has grown from a local college access program to become a national leader in the higher education nonprofit industry. In 2005, we expanded our programming to offer college completion services, becoming one of the first organizations in the country to provide college persistence support.

We also created a unique student information system: CoPilot, which we utilize today to manage our students’ data and license to partners nationally who currently serve more than 350,000 students.

We are now implementing our most ambitious vision: to dramatically advance and scale our efforts to serve many more students in realizing their education and career goals through personalized, tech-mediated coaching services.

Our Mission

College Forward coaches underserved, motivated students to achieve the benefits of higher education and a college degree.

Our Vision

We will lead by building and sharing the most effective, most efficient, and most exciting college access and completion programs in the country.

Our History

2002
While accompanying her son to freshman orientation at Carleton College in Minnesota, Lisa Fielder reads about a program called Admission Possible in the alumni magazine, that helps low-income, first-generation high school students obtain bachelor’s degrees.
2002
2003
Lisa traveles to St. Paul to meet with Jim McCorkell, founder of Admission Possible. Upon returning, she and close friend Doreen Wise decide to replicate Jim’s success in Texas.
2003
2004
Admission Control launches an after-school pilot program with Hays Consolidated Independent School District.
2004
2005
Admission Control launches the College Completion Program.
2005
2006
Admission Control changes to a name that better conveys our mission, College Forward.

College Forward receives Greenlights' Nonny Award for Innovation.

Recruitment for CoFo classes in Georgetown ISD and Del Valle ISD begins.
2006
2007
College Forward recruits its first classes in Austin ISD and Round Rock ISD.

Awarded Best Education Nonprofit from Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce.
2007
2008
College Forward recruits its first full-time coaches.

Awarded the Bank of America Neighborhood Builders Award.
2008
2009
Our First CoFo college graduates earn their degrees!
2009
2010
Awarded Greenlights' Excellence in Innovation.

Included in "Transforming Communities Through Service: A Collection of 52 of the Most Innovative AmeriCorps Programs in the United States," a publication of America’s Service Commission and Innovations in Civic Participation.
2010
2011
Selected as the first community partner of Innovation+.

Awarded Best Education Nonprofit from Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce.

Received the National College Access Network's Award of Excellence.
2011
2012
CoPilot launched internally.
2012
2013
Invited by New Profit, Inc. to join the college success council along with 15 of the nation's leading organizations.
2013
2014
Success Partnerships launches.

CoPilot is available on the Salesforce.com App Exchange.

College Forward participates in the White House College Opportunity Day of Action.
2014
2015
Rural Pipeline Initiative begins.

Advocacy efforts begin.

College Forward wins national competition to begin a longitudinal randomized controlled trial evaluation.
2015
2016
College Forward Launches Clinton Global Initiative Commitment, to Expand Innovative Programs to Increase Student Success.

College Forward partners with First Lady Michelle Obama’s Reach Higher Initiative and Civic Nation to provide students with personalized information and encouragement about important college deadlines and resources.
2016
2017
College Forward founder, Lisa Fielder, retries and Austin Buchan is promoted to Chief Executive Officer.

College Forward received one of the first social impact loans from local Austin, TX investors to further develop CoPilot.

College Forward presents at Dreamforce 2017 Keynote.
2017
2018
Kresge, ECMC Foundations Combine for $1.4 Million Investment in College Forward to Scale CoPilot
2018
2019
College Forward Celebrates its 1600th graduate.

College Forward Awarded toe 2019 Evergreen Prize.
2019