• Frontier Set

    Frontier Set Logo

    The Frontier Set is a national collaborative of 29 colleges and universities and two state systems of higher education. Established in 2017 and supported by funding from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, its purpose is to identify, understand and share what works to accelerate student success, especially for low-income and first generation students, students of color, and working adults.

    AASCU’s Frontier Set is a diverse group of six high performing, high potential postsecondary institutions that have been identified as leaders in transformational change for student success. They are:

    • College of Staten Island (N.Y.)
    • New Jersey City University
    • Northern Arizona University
    • Sam Houston State University (Texas)
    • University of North Carolina-Greensboro
    • University of Texas Rio Grande Valley

    These AASCU institutions are already pioneering what is possible by transforming the way their institutions operate in order to produce substantial gains in completion rates. Now, as members of the Frontier Set, they have the opportunity to collaborate with other institutions to refine, codify, share and scale that work. Joining the AASCU institutions in this project are 23 other campuses, representing research universities, community colleges, and HBCUs, as well as two state systems of higher education.

    We believe that our work with the Frontier Set project will enable us to:

    • Identify the distinctive models that are emerging for student success and evaluate each with respect to its costs, benefits and developmental trajectory; 

    • Accelerate the development of replicable models for regional comprehensive institutions;

    • Gather evidence about these models’ effectiveness, cost and sustainability; and 

    • Capture lessons learned by early innovators which, with related supports, may enable others to follow with less implementation cost, reduced risk and faster time to impact.


    Ultimately, this ambitious collaborative endeavor will accelerate national efforts to improve student success in new and profound ways.