Four New Coaches Join IEBC Effort To Improve Student Success

Dana Quittner, Communications Director, IEBC

(Long Beach, Calif.) – The Institute for Evidence-Based Change (IEBC) has added four new coaches to its Caring Campus team to work with additional community colleges as part of its nationwide expansion.

Caring Campus began in fall 2018 with the goal of increasing student success by improving student connectedness. Coaches work with professional staff and faculty to identify and commit to behaviors that change their interactions with students from the transactional to the relational, adding the human component. Ultimately, this changes the college culture.

Caring Campus encourages staff and faculty to engage in behaviors intended to improve the student experience, such as proactively approaching someone who appears to need assistance; taking the initiative to assist a student through an administrative task; or meeting with the students in their classes to establish a connection.

The diverse group of talented and dedicated individuals joining the IEBC coaching team and contributing their skills and passion to Caring Campus are:


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Lisa Bly-Jones

Dr. Lisa M. Bly-Jones brings an extensive background in workforce development to IEBC, including oversight of a public workforce system and workforce divisions on community college campuses in Illinois and Tennessee. She has led numerous national and local workforce programs offering occupational training, leading to employment.

Bly-Jones is a consensus builder with a demonstrated commitment to achieving equitable outcomes, leading equity initiatives for workforce development.

Bly-Jones shares her expertise at national and state conferences, facilitates round-table discussions, town hall meetings, and teaches courses and workshops.

Learn more about Lisa M. Bly-Jones



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Jacquelyn Stirn

Jacquelyn Stirn is an independent higher education consultant and has served as the Achieving the Dream Data Coach for 13 colleges in six states. Her work also includes external evaluation for student success projects as well as providing guidance for the reorganization of institutional research.

Stirn was the Director of Institutional Research for the Community College of Denver and the University of Colorado System Office. She held research positions at Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education (WICHE), Regis University, Colorado Commission on Higher Education, and Penn State.

Stirn has managed many longitudinal databases. She continues to be active in state, regional and national institutional research associations.

Learn more about Jacquelyn Stirn



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Frank Renz

Dr. Frank Renz worked as a state psychologist in Pennsylvania after college and the military. He began working at community colleges as a counselor and part-time instructor at Amarillo College in Texas. After obtaining his Ph.D., he became the first Director of Research, Planning, and Development at San Juan College in Farmington, New Mexico, rising to Academic Dean of UNM-Valencia Campus.

Renz become the first Executive Director of the New Mexico Association of Community Colleges, where he advocated for funding and policy changes. He also led reform efforts for the New Mexico Higher Education Department in adult basic education, developmental education, and nursing education.

Learn more about Frank Renz



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Maya Evans

Dr. Maya Evans serves as Director of Growth Strategies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Her responsibilities are rooted in the university’s north star, the Wisconsin Idea, which articulates that the beneficence of the university should reach every resident of the state.

Previously, Evans served as Executive Director of Research and Planning at Oakton Community College where she supported development and evaluation of the “Persistence Project,” a Caring Campus initiative.

Evans holds a BA in Political Science from Washington University in St. Louis and earned a Master of Arts and Doctor of Philosophy in Political Science from the University of Illinois at Chicago.

Learn more about Maya Evans



Research documents that students leave college because they do not feel connected to the institution (e.g., Leaving College by Vincent Tinto, 1993, and Relationship-Rich Education by Felten and Lambert, 2020). Newly released research findings from the Community College Research Center at Teachers College, Columbia University report positive outcomes from IEBC’s Caring Campus approach, including cultivating a sense of unity, enhancing staff knowledge, and increasing the potential to improve equity.

About the Institute for Evidence-Based Change (IEBC)

The Institute for Evidence-Based Change (IEBC) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping education stakeholders — community colleges, universities, K-12 school systems, employers and others — use coaching, collaboration and data to make informed decisions and craft solutions that improve practice and dramatically increase student success. We partner with our clients to successfully implement customized evidence-based solutions to today’s most pressing issues. Learn more about IEBC at