About LEAP: Launched in 2005, Liberal Education and America’s Promise (LEAP) is a national public advocacy and campus action initiative of the Association of American Colleges & Universities (AAC&U). LEAP champions the importance of a twenty-first-century liberal education—for individual students and for a nation dependent on economic creativity and democratic vitality. The initiative aims to redefine liberal education with essential learning outcomes and high impact practices (HIPs).

LEAP State Mission: Virginia is one of 13 LEAP States. The State Council of Higher Education for Virginia (SCHEV) and the Virginia Assessment Group joined LEAP States as a statewide vehicle for enhancing policies and educational practices that support a quality liberal education for all Virginians. SCHEV and the Virginia Assessment Group aim to improve graduation rates and workforce outcomes, as well as enhance the quality of the educational experiences at every step of the way.

Featured Engagement Strategy: The Virginia Assessment Group has made AAC&U’s LEAP program a centerpiece of its annual conference since 2010. After Susan Albertine introduced LEAP to participants in 2010, the conference conversation focused on what it means to be a LEAP state. The Virginia Assessment Group continued to address LEAP each year and moved the discussion forward in 2013 when Susan Albertine, Terrell Rhodes and Ken O’Donnell facilitated conversations among participants about practical ways they could champion LEAP on their own campuses. Adding to the conference conversations, the Virginia Assessment Group partnered with the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia (SCHEV) to discuss LEAP with chief academic officers, as well as host a one day drive-in for assessment staff, faculty, and representatives of public K-12 education.