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CCFA Bellwether Awards fete top community college innovators



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LAKE BUENA VISTA, FL—The Community College Futures Assembly has announced the winners of its highly competitive, 19th annual Bellwether Awards at the group’s 2013 policy summit in Orlando.  The Bellwether Awards recognize outstanding community college programs, mainly in the United States and Canada, judged to be at the forefront of innovation and worthy of replicating.

This year’s winners are: Elgin Community College (Elgin, ILL) in the Instructional Programming and Services category, Piedmont Technical College (Greenwood, SC) in the Planning, Governance and Finance category, and Chattanooga State Community College (Chattanooga, TN) in the Workforce Development category.

Dale Campbell, professor and head of the Institute of Higher Education at the University of Florida’s College of Education, founded the CCFA and the Bellwether Awards in 1995. The institute continues to administer the awards program.

“In more than 1,200 national community colleges, this is one of the highest honors an institute can receive. The awards are similar to being selected by your peers, comparable to the Oscar or Emmy awards,” Campbell said. “Leaders from the winning institution are often hired or recruited by other colleges to replicate the award-winning program. They also receive thousands of phone calls and hundreds of visits to help others replicate the success of their program in other community colleges and institutions.”

The Bellwether Awards’ Instructional Programs and Services category recognizes programs or services that have been designed and successfully implemented to foster or support teaching and learning in the community college. Elgin Community College presented a project called “One school can do so little; together we can do so much.” They cited statistics showing that since 2006 the percent of direct-from-high school graduates at Elgin Community College needing remediation has decreased 8 percent overall, and 10 percent in mathematics because of faculty-centered school district partnerships. This project replicated an Alliance for Readiness meeting by providing opportunities to interact with data, ask questions, and transcend educational boundaries.” For more information on this project please contact: Dr. Libby Roeger, Dean, College Transitions & Developmental Education (847) 214-7463 fax (847) 214-7818 E-mail: eroeger@elgin.edu

The Planning, Governance, and Finance category recognizes programs or activities that have been designed and successful y implemented to improve efficiency and effectiveness in the community college. Piedmont Technical College presented a project called “LEAN in Higher Education: How it Continues to Change Our Culture.” The project created better customer service by becoming LEAN to better record student enrollments through more efficient processes.  After winning, the team had this to say (on video): http://youtu.be/wfVuenmdEfM. For more information, contact: Keith Lasure, Associate Vice President of Process Development, Dean Engineering & Industrial Technology, lasure.k@ptc.edu.

The Workforce Development category recognizes programs that create public or private strategic alliances and partnerships that promote community and economic development. Chattanooga State Community College presented a project called “The Wacker Institute: Diplomas with Job Offers!” Chattanooga State has teamed with Wacker Polysilicon-North America to create the Wacker Institute. This innovative program, which includes working in a chemical pilot plant, allows graduates in Chemical Engineering Technology to leave with their diploma in one hand and a job offer from Wacker Chemical in the other. For more information, contact: George Graham, Department Director, Wacker Institute & Dept. Head, Chemical Engineering Technology, George.Graham@ChattanoogaState.edu.

The featured keynote address was presented by Leslie Crutchfield, Senior Advisor at the Foundation Strategy Group and co-author of the critically acclaimed book “Forces for Good: The Six Practices of High-Impact Non-Profits.”

This year’s policy summit was led by Thomas Bailey, Ph.D., Director of the Community College Research Center (ccrc.tc.columbia.edu) with his remark on “Scaling Innovation: Research on the Promising Practices in Developmental Math Education.” J. Noah Brown, Ph.D. president of the Association of Community College Trustees (Acct.org) also provided a session showcasing his new book “First in the World: Community College and America’s Future.” Together the lessons from the speakers and keynote address served as the basis for introspection, strategic decision making, selecting critical issues, and directing policy creation for distribution to key administration and community college oversight board of directors including the Department of Education, American Association of Community Colleges (AACC), the Council for the Study of Community Colleges (CSCC), the National State Directors of Community Colleges, the National Council for Continuing Education and Training (NCCET), the Council for Resource Development (CRD), the National Council of Instructional Administrators (NCIA), the Association of Community College Trustees (ACCT), the Academic Chairs Academy as well as legislators and key policy makers.

The Community College Futures Assembly convenes annually as an independent policy summit to identify critical issues facing community college leaders and to recognize Bellwether finalists as trend-setting institutions. Annually, between 100 and 500 applications are received from around the world. Peer-reviewed committees judge entries in each of the three categories to select ten finalists to go to Lake Buena Vista to present and showcase their projects. The Association of Community College Trustees (ACCT.org) oversees the judging process while, the Council for Resource Development (CRDnet.org) sponsors and provides the peer review judging for the Planning, Governance, and Finance (PGF) category, and the National Council for Continuing Education and Training (NCCET.org) sponsors and provides the peer review judging for the workforce development (WD) category. In almost two decades there have been thousands of applicants but only 55 winning projects honored programs with the Bellwether Award.


CONTACT
Source:  Dale Campbell, Institute of Higher Education, UF College of Education, dfc@coe.ufl.edu, 352-273-4300.

 

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