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Drive to 55

The Drive to 55 is the initiative to increase the number of Tennesseans with a postsecondary degree or credential to 55 percent by the year 2025. The Drive to 55 is focused on ensuring that more Tennesseans are equipped with the skills and credentials that will be needed to support the state’s economy now and in the future.

THEC and TSAC’s work is at the center of the Drive to 55. A number of the initiative’s programs are housed within THEC or TSAC and the staff of the agencies are relentlessly focused on increasing the number of Tennesseans with a postsecondary credential.


The Labor Education Alignment Program (LEAP) provides funding and support to local communities to align the needs of local industry with postsecondary education options available to students. LEAP is administered by THEC’s division of Legal and External Affairs.

TN Promise

THEC and TSAC administer the Tennessee Promise scholarship, including oversight of the program’s rules through TSAC, as well as significant outreach and education on the scholarship through the TSAC outreach specialists and THEC’s College Access and Success Division.

TN Reconnect

The Drive to 55’s focus on getting adults to “Reconnect” with higher education is led by THEC’s Adult Learner Initiatives team. Tennessee Reconnect encompasses the Reconnect web portal, the Tennessee Reconnect Communities, the TCAT Reconnect grant (administered by TSAC), and many more programmatic efforts to reach adult learners in the state.

Advise TN is an initiative of the Drive to 55 focused on increasing access to college advising and building a college-going culture in high schools across the state. The program is administered by THEC’s College Access and Success Division. Advise TN will provide services to all juniors and seniors at each of the 30 participating high schools with the intention of helping students enroll in a postsecondary option that fits the interests and needs of the students.