What is ACE?

The Academy for College Excellence sees community colleges as engines of progress and prosperity in communities. To help community colleges adapt and live up to this role, we offer ideas and tools to transform the education experience for community college students, instructors, staff and administrators.  We help community colleges better serve the struggling-but-strong students now coming in search of a pathway toward upward mobility. Learn more..

Student Support (Re)defined Case Study with ACE

We are excited to announce the release of a case study on ACE in partnership with the Research and Planning Group for California Community Colleges (RP Group)!

Curious about what the findings and themes of Student Support (Re)defined can look like when fully activated? Read this case study of the Academy for College Excellence (ACE) that explores how ACE takes a fundamentally different approach to support, accelerating learning for underprepared students through the classroom.

Click here to see the full case study report.


RTI International Evaluation of the Academy for College Excellence - Final Report

The final report in our multi-year longitudinal study from RTI International shows that ACE students experience a high velocity of advancement toward transfer-level English, as well as shifts in affective factors that are important for academic success. The final report from RTI analyzes the achievement of multiple cohorts of ACE students at 4 colleges—Berkeley City College, Cabrillo College, Hartnell College, and Los Medanos College—over 3 semesters, at the end of each semester and again two semesters subsequent to the ACE Semester, using comparison groups constructed from institutional and program data.

Read more about the study here.

Our Mission


To give underprepared community college students the opportunity to better their lives by helping them develop the academic qualifications, professional skills, and personal attributes necessary to succeed.

To “bridge” students into regular community college courses via one full-time, semester-long transformative learning environment focused on academics and self-efficacy.

To increase the number of students who emerge from community college prepared for a knowledge-work professional career with a future.


Our Vision

To partner with community colleges across the nation, serving underprepared students with a wide range of developmental needs to increase their certificate, degree, and transfer completion rates. 


ACE is a sponsored project of Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors (RPA). As fiscal sponsor, RPA provides ACE with its 501(c)3 tax-exempt status and facilitates the charitable purposes of ACE by providing a broad range of operating services.