PCC named one of the top 150 in country for a third time
Pratt Community College is recognized for being one of the nation’s top 150 community colleges for a third consecutive term. Highlighting the critical importance of improving student success in America’s community colleges, the Aspen Institute College Excellence Program today named PCC as one of the nation’s 150 top community colleges, challenging it to compete for the $1 million fund for the 2017 Aspen Prize for Community College Excellence.
The Aspen Institute identified the 150 community colleges -- about 15 percent of all institutions -- using a quantitative formula that assesses performance and improvement in four areas: graduation rates, degrees awarded, student retention rates, and equity in student outcomes. These 150 colleges will now compete for the prestigious honor following a year-long research process into how well their students learn, complete degrees, and get jobs with competitive wages after graduating. PCC, along with the other colleges nominated, will be winnowed to eight-to-ten finalists in the fall based on how PCC helps students complete their programs on time, how well students do in the job market after graduating, and the effective use of data to ensure continued student success. Prize finalists will be named in the fall of 2016 and the winner will be announced early 2017.
“This is a very prestigious award to be honored with, one that recognizes commitment and attainment of student success,” said Dr. Michael Calvert, President of PCC. “ I am very proud to be part of an institution that values and models quality instruction and care and concern for students.”
Nearly half of America’s college students attend community college, with more than seven million students – youth and adult learners – working towards certificates and degrees in these institutions across the country.
PCC is currently working on an application containing detailed data on these criteria. It will demonstrate that it delivers exceptional student results, uses data to drive decisions, and continually improves over time. The Aspen Institute will conduct site visits to each of the finalists in the fall. A full list of the 150 community colleges is available at www.AspenCCPrize.org.
In addition, the 150 Prize-eligible institutions are also invited to nominate exceptional students enrolled in their best middle-skill STEM programs for scholarships. Up to 50 Siemens Technical Scholars will be selected from programs that provide outstanding preparation for high-demand jobs in manufacturing, energy, health care, and information technology. A partnership between the Siemens Foundation and the Aspen Institute, the Siemens Technical Scholars Program intends to help our nation’s community colleges and their business partners bridge the gap between projected shortages of skilled workers and the millions of high-demand jobs in these STEM industries. Scholarship winners and the programs that deliver rigorous training enabling their success will be announced in fall 2016. For more information and to view video profiles of 2015 Siemens Technical Scholars, go to: http://as.pn/stscholars.