2009-2014

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President Obama Expands Skills for America's Future Program
In a bid to boost America’s global competitiveness, President Obama has increased the scope of the “Skills for America’s Future” initiative. Learn about how this impacts community colleges and the future earning potential for its students.
The Skills for America's Future program was introduced by the current administration as a way to match up community college training with fields in need of qualified workers. The idea behind the initiative was to make community college graduates more competitive and marketable in the real world after school, as well as to provide industries with highly qualified workers. This month, President Obama has announced that Skills for America's Future will expand further, ensuring more community college students get the training they need to find successful, lucrative jobs once their college training is complete.
 

What is the Skills for America's Future Program?

Last year, President Obama launched an ambitious initiative along with the Aspen Institute, designed to bring companies together with community colleges to produce future workers that would be highly qualified and able to compete in a global market. The movement was dubbed Skills for America's Future, and it began with partnerships between industries and academia that would coordinate the training and build the skills of a qualified workforce in the United States. The initiative, according to the Aspen Institute website, would serve as a broad umbrella under which labor unions, corporations and community colleges could coordinate their efforts to train up a new generation of American workers.

From its inception, Skills for America's Future began signing on a number of key players to help the initiative achieve its goals. Some of the leaders that have worked with the Skills for America's Future program since the beginning include
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Sprucing Up Campus: Beautification Projects Abounding at Community Colleges
Community colleges have big beautification plans this summer to prepare their campuses for the fall. Learn about some of the lovely and innovative projects in store this summer, even for budget-strapped schools.
Summer is the time that many homeowners kick their renovation projects in high gear, but homeowners aren't the only ones sprucing up their environment this year.  Community colleges around the country are finding ways to make the campus experience more attractive to students and staff. Despite tight budgets for many schools, some are getting creative in finding ways to spruce up their campus grounds without breaking the bank. We'll take a look at how three community colleges are providing their students with a prettier place to head back to class.
 

Taking Trash to a Whole New Level

Laredo Community College art students have found a new way to bring their artistic endeavors to life. According to a recent report in the Laredo Sun, many of the art students at this school have spent the last semester experimenting with a brand new medium – large steel drums that serve as outdoor trash cans throughout the campus. The painted drums are a part of a Laredo campus beautification project known as "Yes We Can!"
 
For this part of the project, art students painted 19 well-known works of art onto the cans, including masterpieces by Vincent Van Gogh, Paul Cezanne and Diego Rivera. Creating a design for the paintings from a two-dimensional canvas to a cylinder was more than a little challenging. Students began by reproducing pictures from an art history book and transferring them onto a 3-foot cylinder using a redrawing technique. From there, students designed their images in a larger scale to
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What are the Biggest Issues Facing Community Colleges Today? New Study has Answers
Community colleges face many hurdles, ranging from budget constraints to increased enrollment, but a new study pinpoints some of the largest issues - which may surprise you.
The current economic slowdown, high unemployment rates and rising costs of four-year universities have sent many college students scurrying to the ivied halls of their neighborhood community colleges to begin the path of higher education. Community colleges across the country have seen record enrollment figures over recent years, as more students are turning to these institutions right out of high school and well into adulthood. However, community colleges are far from the utopia many make them out to be – in fact, these schools have their own sets of issues and hurdles they must overcome to help their students be as successful as possible. We'll take a look at a recent study that outlines eight of the biggest issues community colleges face today.
 

About the Study

Western Governors University, an online college that provides more than 50 degree programs across the country, recently conducted a study with The SOURCE on Community College Issues, Trends and Strategies, a new online resource for schools. The study went to a broad range of community college leaders nationwide to get their perceptions on the major hurdles in higher education at the community college level. The report found that there is a diverse outlook among community colleges as to which issues are the most prevalent in the industry. Some of the issues discussed during the study included college readiness, student services, and workforce development, according to a press release on the WGU website.
 
Although there was much variation in the issues
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Texas Community Colleges Face Severe Cuts that Could Mean Reduced Enrollment
One of the largest states is facing massive budget cuts that are impacting Texas community colleges. Learn about the current predicament and what it means for Texan students.
Community colleges have traditionally been institutes of higher education, allowing anyone to attend, regardless of their academic ability or income level. Thanks to state funding, these schools were designed for both those who would struggle in four-year colleges right out of high school and those who could not afford the tuition at the local university. Community colleges were also an option for adults who needed additional training to advance in their current careers or switch over to industries with greater potential.

All of these purposes come at a cost, and until recently, community colleges – with the help of state funding – were able to pay the price. However, the recent economic slowdown, combined with a rising unemployment rate, has boosted enrollment at these schools while cutting the available money. The result has been a serious financial crunch for many community colleges across the country. In light of these recent economic difficulties, many schools are faced with challenging decisions over how best to serve their student population on a fraction of the money to which they are accustomed. This video provides an update on the financial situation facing community colleges in Texas.

Lone Star State in Dire Straits
 
While the entire country is feeling the economic pinch at the community college level, three states appear to be grappling with their financial reality more severely than others. Texas, California, and Arizona are all left wondering how to keep community colleges open and running
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First Ever National Community College Survey: The Surprising Results!
Be surprised by the results from the first ever national community college survey, which found that students value their internet connection more than their instructors!
Community colleges have come to the forefront of post-secondary education since President Obama made them one of his top areas of focus over the first two years of his administration. To determine exactly what type of impact community colleges might have on adults and industries across the country, the first national community college survey was conducted last year. The data, collected by the Pearson Foundation, share some insight into who is going to community college today and some of the major challenges these institutions and their students face.
 

Who is Attending Community College?

One part of the survey took a look at the types of students community colleges are frequently seeing today, and the results were reported in the Washington Post. This information can help colleges determine the best courses, faculty and schedules to accommodate their student body demographics. The Pearson Foundation study found:

  • One-third of the student population at community colleges were enrolling in college right after graduating from high school.
  • One-third was returning to college from the workforce, presumably to get additional training for their current job or education necessary to switch careers.
  • One-third was taking community college course for self-improvement or enjoyment purposes.
  •  Half the students surveyed were age 26 or older.
  • About 60 percent were planning to transfer to a four-year university after completing their community college degree program (actual transfer rates are actually much lower).
It appears that the large majority of community college students are much older than the average student attending a four-year university. In addition, many
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Recent Articles
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July 16, 2022
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Community College News

2009-2014