• College access
  • Enrollment management
  • Student retention
  • Financial aid and affordability
  • Strategic planning
  • Research and evaluation


In addition to co-leading SwailLandis, Dr. Swail also serves as President & CEO of the Educational Policy Institute (EPI), where he oversees a variety of research projects, many of which are evaluations of US Department of Education-funded programs at public schools and higher education institutions across the United States.

Swail is well known for his work in student retention and success, beginning with his doctoral work at The George Washington University which produced Swail Geometric Framework for Student Retention. The framework was the foundational piece of 2003’s Jossey-Bass publication, “Retaining Minority Students in Higher Education.”

Since 2005, Swail has held the annual Student Success Symposium as well as Retention 101 workshops across the US and Canada. He has worked with groups and individuals at hundreds of institutions during this time and is frequently asked to speak to leadership and faculty groups at institutions of higher education. Over his career, Dr. Swail has worked with hundreds of institutions of higher education on issues related to student success.

Prior to establishing EPI in 2002, Dr. Swail served as the Founding Director of the Pell Institute for the Study of Educational Opportunity, Vice President of Research at the Council for Opportunity in Education (COE), Senior Policy Scientist at SRI International, Associate Director for Policy Analysis at the College Board, and was a middle school teacher in Hampton, Virginia and his native Winnipeg, Manitoba.

In addition to “Retaining Minority Students in Higher Education,” Dr. Swail edited and co-authored 2012’s “Finding Superman: Debating the Future of Public Education in America,” and is editing and co-authoring “The ROI of Higher Education.”

Dr. Swail received his doctorate in education policy at The George Washington University, his master’s in science from Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Virginia, and his bachelor’s in education from the University of Manitoba in Winnipeg, Manitoba.

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