Nationally, only 13% of low-income students graduate from college by age 24. This is not enough. This year, professionals from across the country will convene at the CAP College Success Institute to share best practices and strategies that help increase the college graduation rate of low-income and first-generation students. Professionals from community-based and direct-service organizations, representatives from colleges and universities, and technology innovators are invited to attend.


The theme for the 2020 conference is: “Theory to Action: Empowering Students to College and Career Success”

  • Understanding the challenges faced by low-income and first-generation college students 
  • Leveraging technology solutions such as data management, analysis, and direct tools 
  • Financing an education with financial aid, debt reduction, and scholarships 
  • Best practices in direct service intervention, including coaching  
  • Strategies to support college students transition from college to career


The College Success Institute is hosted by CAP, which supports nearly 700 students through the successful completion of their college degrees, as quickly and with as little debt as possible. While nationally just 13% of low-income students have a college degree by age 24 (or six years), 86% of CAP students are on track to graduate in six years. CAP is a program of Making Waves Foundation, a 501c3 nonprofit.



The CAP College Success Institute will take place at the Oakland Marriott City Center (1001 Broadway, Oakland, California, 94607). The room block for this conference is available here



The full conference agenda will be announced soon.


Please let us know if you would like to be informed of the latest conference updates by completing this form.



Additional featured speakers will be announced soon.

Dr. Anthony Abraham Jack, sociologist and Assistant Professor of Education at Harvard University, is transforming the way we address diversity and inclusion in education. His new book, “The Privileged Poor: How Elite Colleges are Failing Disadvantaged Students,” reframes the conversation surrounding poverty and higher education. Anthony Jack is also a junior fellow at the Harvard Society of Fellows. Recently, he wrote a feature for The New York Times Magazine’s Education Issue, based off his book and life experience as a low-income college student. His research has been cited  by The New York Times, The Boston Globe, The Atlantic, The Huffington Post, The National Review, The Washington Post, American RadioWorks, WBUR, and MPR. His book, “The Privileged Poor,” was named the 2018 recipient of the Thomas J. Wilson Memorial Prize by Harvard University Press.


Hector Preciado began his career with the Greenlining Institute, an advocacy and community building group based on inclusion and equity. Preciado is passionate about advancing and empowering communities of color. Currently serving as the Director of Global Sales Development with Hired, Inc., Preciado weaves technology as a tool to not just find a job but also seek meaningful connections. In his previous role with LinkedIn, he founded LinkedIn’s Latino/a employee resource group, HOLA.



Oscar Sweeten-Lopez is the president of College Success Tools at the Michael & Susan Dell Foundation and the founder of GradSnapp, a technology that helps professionals track and support their students to college graduation. From 2005–2016, Oscar was the portfolio director overseeing the highly successful Dell Scholars program, which supports disadvantaged students to graduate at four times the national average. Oscar currently serves as President, Board of Directors for the National Scholarship Providers Association (NSPA).



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