Institutional Transformation – So Every Student CAN Graduate.

When colleges and universities invest in their students and communities, the return is transformative – exceptional student outcomes through sustainable institutional practices.

We Stand With – And For – Higher Education.

Our Values:

Equity & Inclusion

We are committed to justice.


Our words and actions align.


We think and create progressively.


We are stewards of trust.


Our hope drives our work.


We value and help others.

We Are A Diverse Team Of Educators, Strategists, Scholars, And Data Specialists, And We’re Laser-Focused On You.

Whether it’s redesigning a gateway course or the first two years of college, our field-tested experts know where and how to start to get your institution what it needs to win.

Our Mission

The John N. Gardner Institute for Excellence in Undergraduate Education is a non-profit organization dedicated to partnering with colleges, universities, philanthropic organizations, educators, and other entities to increase institutional responsibility for improving outcomes associated with teachinglearningretention, and completion. Through its efforts, the Institute will strive to advance higher education’s larger goal of achieving equity and social justice.

We Strengthen the Leaders and Institutions Strengthening Student Experiences.



Logo of the University of Houston
Logo of Capital University

Our History

We’ve been enhancing the undergraduate experience since 1999.

The Brevard, North Carolina-based John N. Gardner Institute for Excellence in Undergraduate Education, co-founded by Betsy O. Barefoot and John N. Gardner, traces its origins to work first conducted under the name of the Policy Center on the First College Year with initial support coming from the Pew Charitable Trusts.

Supported thereafter through a combination of grants and fees for services, the non-profit Gardner Institute has served hundreds of colleges and universities of all types – public and private, two-year and four-year, and minority-serving institutions. The Institute has done so as a mission-driven public charity.

The varied forms of the Institute’s work include efforts such as the development of consortia, the facilitation of an array of evidence-based student success improvement efforts, the administration and evaluation of national surveys, and other institutional transformation efforts. The Institute’s work has helped the field become a more equitable academic space for learners while transforming and strengthening diverse institutions around the country and the globe.

Keep Exploring

Connect With Us

News & Updates

Sign up to receive the latest updates and resources from the Gardner Institute.

EGovt Template - Mad UX © 2020. All Rights Reserved