Community Colleges In The Forefront

You're going to see and hear a lot about community colleges in the next few weeks and months, as a handful of big foundations turn their attention to them, providing direct support, funding for media coverage, and research dollars. One recent example is from the PBS NewsHour: "Thousands of would-be nurses are waitlisted at community colleges -- the main affordable choice for them. At the same time, the United States is facing a nursing shortage and importing nurses from abroad because of the high demand." (Thousands of Would-be Nurses Denied Affordable Training Options). And earlier this week the NYT published a piece that explained some of what's going on: "The institutions that are attracting the attention of more and more philanthropists are public two-year colleges that measure their fund-raising in thousands of dollars, not billions. That interest is reflected in the decision a few years ago by a group of foundations — including Ford, the James Irvine Foundation, Lumina and the Heinz Endowments — to start meeting to learn more about community colleges." ( Big Givers Turn to Poorly Financed Community Colleges).

UPDATE: Michele at AFT says that teacher prep is one big growth opportunity for community colleges (Community Colleges and Teacher Prep).


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