CCBC wins grant to focus on student–veterans for AACC’s ‘Right Signals’ Initiative

May 17, 2016 | by Jacquie Lucy | 443.840.4668 (office) | 443.761.2482 (cell)

Designed to identify and develop a national model for recognizable credentialing

Baltimore County, MD – Community College of Baltimore County is one of 20 community colleges nationally selected by the American Association of Community Colleges to participate in the “Right Signals” initiative designed “to identify and develop a national model for recognizable credentialing.”

According to an AACC release, “Some students enter the workforce with credentials obtained online and/or in-person at other colleges, the workplace, high schools, IT boot camps, the military, community-based and other organizations. Some community college students begin in a non-credit program, earning an occupational certificate or industry certification, with interest in transferring to credit-bearing courses. In short, community colleges must operate in the highly diversified and constantly adapting intersection of their students' varied credentialing pathways. The purpose of the Right Signals Initiative is to demonstrate a new credentialing model that recognizes multiple quality credentials to send “the right signals” to employers, students and colleges about the meaning of these credentials. Key credentials to be targeted are degrees, certificates, industry certifications, apprenticeships and badges.”

“We are pleased for an opportunity, through this grant initiative, to deepen and expand CCBC’s Prior Learning Assessment and credentialing activities,” remarks CCBC President Sandra L. Kurtinitis. “The college has a long history of leveraging its partnerships as a means of accelerating the efforts of our students academically, while at the same time, reducing the total cost of higher education without compromising quality.” CCBC’s study is focusing on its growing population of student-veterans studying in the School of Health Professions, Business Studies, Criminal Justice Studies, and Aviation programs. With a student-veteran population of over 1,200 each year for the past three years, CCBC is highly attuned to the unique higher education needs of former and active-duty military personnel.

Funded by a $60,000 grant from the Lumina Foundation in partnership with the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC), CCBC’s strategies for the 18-month grant include: (1) expanding degree offerings to transition students from continuing education into credit courses; (2) exploring the development of badges and micro-credentials; and (3) expanding the use of prior learning assessment.

For additional information about this grant, contact Tori Burns, director of Foundation and Corporate Relations, at 443-840-3617.

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About the Community College of Baltimore County (www.ccbcmd.edu)
CCBC offers hundreds of programs and thousands of courses helping people of all ages, backgrounds and interests earn degrees, transfer, launch or advance careers, and prepare for in-demand jobs.

Providing accessible, affordable and high-quality education since 1957, CCBC educates more than 70,000 students each year, including half of all Baltimore County residents attending college in Maryland as undergraduates. Committed to student success and the development of lifelong learners who strengthen our regional workforce and enrich our community, CCBC has also been selected to participate in Achieving the Dream, a national student success initiative. In 2011, the Chronicle of Education honored CCBC as one of only 26 community colleges across the nation named “Great Colleges to Work For.”

CCBC is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education, 3624 Market Street, 2nd Floor West, Philadelphia, PA 19104 (267-284-5000). The Middle States Commission on Higher Education is an institutional accrediting agency recognized by the U.S. Secretary of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation.

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