Better Together

Better Together is a joint venture launched in early 2020 by Metro Nashville Public Schools (MNPS) and Nashville State Community College (NSCC), to help MNPS graduates prepare for, attend, and complete college.

Better Together Play Video


The overarching goals for the joint venture are to expand college access, to boost college persistence and completion, and to significantly improve student outcomes for both systems – with a particular focus on closing all achievement, equity and opportunity gaps to expand student opportunities and to build our regional workforce.

Expanded College Access

  • Increase the number of MNPS students enrolling in college. 
  • Increase the number of MNPS students applying to and enrolling at NSCC. 
  • Increase the number of MNPS students maintaining Tennessee Promise eligibility and completing FAFSA. 
  • Decrease the number of MNPS graduates needing remedial courses. 

Boost College Persistence & Completion

  • Increase the retention of first-time, full-time students at NSCC - and decrease the retention gap between students of color and white students. 
  • Decrease the number of first-time, full-time NSCC students not earning credit hours during the first semester - and decrease the gap between students of color and white students. 
  • Increase the number of MNPS students obtaining a credential or degree.

"When it comes to student success and workforce development, we see MNPS and Nashville State as one institution with one purpose. Our MNPS graduates attend Nashville State more than any other college. Our institutions must be united in helping all of them succeed. "
Dr. Adrienne Battle
Director, Metro Nashville Public Schools

Key Initiatives to Date

Additional strategic partners have been brought aboard and several key Better Together initiatives are already underway to help address these goals.

Expanded Dual Enrollment

MNPS and NSCC are working together to enroll even more MNPS students in dual enrollment courses. Dual enrollment offers MNPS students college-level academics, early college credit, and a potential industry credential. This early college experience also helps demystify college to help increase enrollment and retention.

Dual Enrollment at NSCC

Shared Data Dashboard & Goal Setting

Working with tnAchieves, Better Together has constructed a shared data dashboard to track, monitor and utilize key information and milestone metrics about each MNPS student’s journey to and through Nashville State. Adding to the partnership, SCORE has supported overall visioning, goal-setting, and project management.

Targeted Student Support & Interventions

Using the Shared Dashboard, the partners target specific reminders and interventions to encourage and assist students as they approach deadlines or face questions and hurdles during the college-going process.

BrightPath Tutoring & Mentoring

In addition to the volunteer mentoring tnAchieves provides all Tennessee Promise-eligible students, Better Together is also working with BrightPath to provide MNPS high school students and recent graduates with free, one-on-one virtual tutoring and mentoring. Founded by recent Vanderbilt University graduates, BrightPath is helping prepare students academically and supporting them individually during and after the transition to college.

NSCC Learning Center

BrightPath Tutoring

Student Summer Success Course

Nashville State’s Student Summer Success Course, conducted in partnership with tnAchieves, offers incoming first-year students an immersive college summer experience to help them build the skills they need to be successful as college students.

Nashville GRAD

With the support of the Mayor's office, Metro Council, and community partners, Nashville GRAD aims to remove the non-academic barriers to college retention and completion, the Nashville GRAD program offers NSCC students direct financial assistance and wraparound supports, including money for textbooks and transportation, a laptop computer, and direct advising and career development support.

Nashville GRAD
"By working together, we are creating a longer runway for students to build the skills and confidence they need to attend and complete college, which is still the strongest ladder to greater economic and social mobility and success."
Dr. Shanna L. Jackson
President, Nashville State Community College

Better Together Logo