This is a copy of the Awake58 newsletter originally sent on Monday, October 15, 2018. Click here to subscribe.
We have a special sneak peek for you
We attended the community college conference last week and 400-plus folks joined us for the reception… We spotlight McDowell Tech, Carteret, Tri-County, and Southeastern… Bloomberg Business Week spotlights Forsyth Tech and their emphasis around economic development…
First, let me say thank you to all of you who have been reading this email each week. We all get too much email, so I appreciate you taking a chance on us. We also appreciate the feedback we received from the survey. Your feedback will continue to shape our work as we move forward.
As a small token of our appreciation, we wanted to give you a sneak peek of a video we are launching on Wednesday to the rest of our audience.
This is the story of the Awake58 Blitz. Many of you asked why we went to all 58 schools over the course of just a few days — and here is the answer.
I hope you enjoy the video. Stay tuned for the full release. Your readership matters. Your participation matters. Thank you again.
One question I have for you — we are considering launching a Facebook Group which would serve as an extension of this newsletter. It would be a place to discuss the issues, challenges, and opportunities ahead for community colleges, share resources, answer questions, and connect.
Would you be interested in participating? Please let me know by replying directly to this email.
Liz Bell explores Carteret’s connection to the coast and how their location has driven program development.
Dr. John Gossett and Dr. Penny Cross of McDowell Tech are profiled by Yasmin Bendaas. Dr. Gossett spoke out on parity funding for credit and non-credit courses. I’d be curious to know your thoughts as it certainly promises to be a key legislative priority for the session next year. The only thing Yasmin missed is how great he is at Twitter.
Analisa Sorrells went to Murphy, a town of about 1,600 people that is closer to the state capitals of Alabama, Georgia, Kentucky, South Carolina, and Tennessee than it is to Raleigh and shares what she found at Tri-County Community College.
What do Jiminy Cricket and Pinocchio have to do with Southeastern Community College?
Worth a click
Joe Nocera with Bloomberg Business Week takes a look at the work of Dr. Green and his team at Forsyth Tech to become a hub for local economic growth. Nocera spotlights the transition of the college, “Today, only 20 percent of the school’s programs are oriented toward transfers. The other 80 percent teach the skills that will allow Forsyth students to make a good middle-class living without a four-year college degree.”
I have been obsessed with this set of articles this week. Automation is all the rage in policy circles, and while I remain skeptical of some of the projections around job loss, I do think the Quartz series raises interesting questions around the need to reconceive the “meaning of work” and lifts up some policy solutions.
Declining enrollment rates are not just isolated to North Carolina community colleges. This is a trend the entire post-secondary world will have to deal with. This column from the Hechinger Report argues it may well be a positive development for students. I’d love to know how your college is grappling with enrollment. Shoot me a note.
By the numbers
We spent a lot of time at the NC Community College Conference digging into the data presentations. We heard about the promise of good data analytics to boost performance and completion rates, the problem of faulty or outdated data, and more.
241% increase in certificates
Finish First, a tool created by faculty at Wake Tech Community College, helped them increase completion rates of certificates 241%.
5 of 6 excellence levels
Preliminary levels for the newest excellence marks were shown at the conference. If they stay as is, no college will have hit all 6 and only Davidson County Community College will hit 5 of 6.
Over 12,000 transfer students
Over the last 30 years, North Carolina has seen incredible growth in transfer students. From 1986 to 2016, transfers to UNC/private institutions have grown from 3,300 transfer students to more than 12,000 transfer students.
Low math credits
The percentage of students starting in a developmental education class who complete a math credit bearing course after 2 years is extremely low. 7% for African Americans, 10% for Hispanics, and 14% for Caucasians.
One more thing…
More than four hundred people joined us for our Awake58 reception last Monday. It was an absolute delight to be with you all. We are deeply thankful to all of you for joining with us and we hope those of you who joined us had a blast.
For the rest of the photos, check out our Facebook page.
We are thankful to the John M Belk Endowment for sponsoring the event.
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