Tribal Colleges Breaking Through, a partnership of JFF, the National Council for Workforce Education, and the American Indian Higher Education Consortium, was an 18-month initiative focused on piloting workforce and education strategies to better serve low-skilled students at tribal colleges and universities. Six institutions participated—Comanche Nation College, Leech Lake Tribal College, Little Big Horn College, Northwest Indian College, Salish Kootenai College, and Sitting Bull College—with each establishing two or more cohorts of GED or workforce students and incorporating the four Breaking Through core strategies. The colleges also joined the national Breaking Through network of colleges and attended semiannual peer learning meetings designed to further promote effective approaches for academically underprepared students.
Data from the participating colleges suggest that Tribal Colleges Breaking Through has had a significant impact. TCBT institutions piloted Breaking Through with roughly 400 students and awarded more than 450 industry-recognized credentials and GEDs during the 18-month initiative. This brief reviews case studies from the six TCBT colleges and universities.