Not Your Father's Community College: New Programs, Increased Visibility Boost Two-Year Institutions' Appeal

By Lum, Lydia | Black Issues in Higher Education, June 17, 2004 | Go to article overview

Not Your Father's Community College: New Programs, Increased Visibility Boost Two-Year Institutions' Appeal


Lum, Lydia, Black Issues in Higher Education


Public perception of community colleges has improved so much in the past two decades that they are no longer regarded as higher education's last resort. Many two-year schools have increased the number and visibility of honors programs. They have signed deals with many four-year universities, even Ivy League institutions, giving community-college graduates scholarships and entry into those schools.

The first graduating class of Miami Dade College's honors program last year probably could have gone to any university anywhere, with SAT scores of 1200 and high school GPAs of at least 3.7. After earning associate's degrees, their destinations included Amherst, Notre Dame, Yale, Cornell, Georgetown, Duke and Howard.

Educators are quick to point out that success stories run throughout community-college innovations. Dual-credit programs, born many years ago but mushrooming within the last decade, have produced graduates who might not otherwise have stepped foot into the colleges. Allowing high schoolers to enroll in college concurrently, the programs are aimed at introducing them to college-level work, while theoretically trimming state educational expenses because students' educational careers are shortened. Houston Community College System Chancellor Dr. Bruce Leslie cites a Black student who earned her associate's degree a week before earning her high school diploma, with plans of transferring to the University of Houston and eventually, Baylor Medical School. She skipped her HCC commencement ceremony because it coincided with a student trip to China, but her mom, who showed up anyway, quoted her as saying "all this was made possible because of HCC and the chance to start college early." Leslie says.

Dr. Janis Hadley, president of Housatonic Community College in Connecticut, views today's dual-credit programs and other expansions no differently than the work-force development and training initiatives that two-year colleges introduced years ago.

"The new curriculum at that time was as much a slippery slope then as these issues are now," says Hadley, also convener of the President's Roundtable, a group of about 100 Black community college presidents. "We cannot be all things to all people. But our core mission is to offer access to all students, so things that expand those opportunities are good, whether it's work-force development or academic expansion." The question is, how much of a good thing is too much?

One of the more controversial moves by community colleges in recent years has resulted in a handful now offering baccalaureate degrees. Miami Dade, one of the most visible and largest two-year schools with 59,000 for-credit students, now gives baccalaureate degrees in special education and secondary math and science education. Officials there plan more baccalaureate programs and have dropped the word "community" from its name to comply with accreditation rules, leading longtime academic observers to call it a "hybrid." Supporters of the baccalaureate movement praise it as a quick, efficient response to work-force shortages because four-year universities move so slowly. Critics though, contend that the movement unnecessarily duplicates university degree programs and question the quality of instruction. They also question the wisdom of putting resources into baccalaureate programs at a time when many urban, two-year colleges are housed in old facilities needing renovation or even replacement.

Miami Dade's venture into the baccalaureate realm came after surveys showed that neighboring Broward County, as well as Miami-Dade County, needed several times more teachers annually than were emerging from the region's four-year schools.

Dr. George Boggs, president of the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC), describes himself as "not a big fan" of the baccalaureate movement. "Community colleges are nimble enough to respond to community needs," he says, "but we already have universities. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Not Your Father's Community College: New Programs, Increased Visibility Boost Two-Year Institutions' Appeal
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Author Advanced search

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.