Inclusion

May 2022
Accessibility as a cultural and societal responsibility has been gaining momentum, but perhaps by most standards, not fast enough. Twenty-two percent of Canadians 15 years of age or older have at least one disability (Statistics Canada, 2018). Among persons with disabilities, 60 percent report having a mental health-related disability (Statistics Canada, 2018). Persons with mental health and learning disabilities comprise the two largest groups of students who employ Accessible Learning services at Humber College Institute of Technology and Advanced Learning. Historically, postsecondary...
April 2022
Creating a sense of belonging in the classroom is imperative, particularly at community colleges. Most community colleges are commuter schools, where living on campus for the full college experience is not an option (Pannoni, 2015). In addition, the student population at community colleges is more diverse than at universities. The interactions of nontraditional students, including those who are older, supporting families, and/or in the workforce, for example, revolve around attending their courses rather than getting involved on campus (Pannoni, 2015). This dynamic can lead to engagement with...
March 2022
Colleges and universities across the U.S. and beyond are striving to recruit and retain a diverse faculty that is representative of their student populations. Institutions have revamped their practices to ensure that faculty diversity is at the forefront of hiring considerations; everything from recruitment practices to committee trainings has been transformed with great care. A recent step taken by Austin Community College (ACC) to enhance its diversity efforts was to pilot the inclusion of the student voice when hiring full-time faculty. While it is standard practice to involve graduate...
February 2022
Calhoun Community College and Drake State Community & Technical College officials have developed a partnership that will not only address learning obstacles for adult learners, but job training needs as well. Greater Opportunities for Adult Learners (GOAL) is a free program designed specifically for individuals who do not have a high school diploma and want to become more employable. Individuals who enroll in the program have access to educational resources focused on improving their reading, math, and language skills to obtain a GED, learn English as a second language, and/or earn a...
December 2021
Rio Salado College (RSC) and InScribe have partnered to launch a pilot series of innovative digital communities that will allow RSC’s students to easily connect with their peers, advisors, and faculty to promote engagement and improve outcomes. These interactive spaces were designed in partnership with the college’s student leaders, incorporating their experience and feedback to ensure that each community is engaging, impactful, and relevant. The decision to adopt a digital community strategy aligns with RSC's commitment to flexible, on-demand student support and creating an inclusive culture...
October 2021
College students who are parents, a.k.a., student-parents, have always been enrolled in community colleges, but only within the past few years have they been explicitly recognized as a distinct student group with a unique set of support needs. According to the Institute for Women’s Policy Research (2018), more than one in five postsecondary students in the U.S. is a student-parent. This holds true at Monroe Community College (MCC), where 21.4 percent of students enrolled in 2019-2020 had children under age 18 (DeMario, 2021). Student-Parent Risk Factors Figure 1 shows that MCC’s student-...
July 2021
For decades, Jackson College (JC) has been a U.S. leader in providing higher education access and opportunity to incarcerated students. The town of Jackson, Michigan, has long been known as a “prison city,” and three large correctional facilities are located less than 15 miles from JC’s Central Campus. In 1967, the college offered its first class “inside the walls.” In 1969-1970, a pilot prison education program for the Southern Michigan Prison was launched to provide qualifying inmates an opportunity to further their education. Jackson Community College (as it was then called) was one of 26...
April 2021
A unique partnership between Johnson County Community College’s (JCCC) Continuing Education Transportation program and Johnson County Adult Education’s (JCAE) Literacy program puts newly trained truck drivers on the road to success. The initiative helps non-native English speakers in Johnson County obtain workforce skills in truck driving. Chris Specht, former Program Coordinator of Accelerating Opportunity: Kansas at JCCC, began laying the groundwork in 2017. Thanks to the combined effort of many at the college, the program officially launched in summer 2020. “The collaboration between the...
January 2021
Rio Salado College is one of 67 postsecondary institutions to be included in an expansion of the U.S. Department of Education’s Second Chance Pell Experimental Sites Initiative. One-hundred and thirty colleges in 42 states and the District of Columbia will now be involved in this initiative, which provides need-based Pell grants for people incarcerated in state and federal prisons to pursue higher learning. The majority of incarcerated individuals are Pell-eligible, but they have been banned from applying for assistance since 1994 as a result of the 1994 Violent Crime Control and Law...
October 2020
The Community College of Allegheny County (CCAC) Honors Council is offering a new pilot program called Give Honors A Try! The program permits non-honors students who meet certain criteria to take honors courses and engage in honors-related activities. Each year, CCAC’s Honors Program provides a myriad of opportunities for scholastically minded students to develop leadership skills and to participate in a variety of conferences and community service projects that foster academic and personal enrichment. These include opportunities to hear from guest speakers, field trips, real-world...
February 2020
Community college faculty, staff, and administrators face many challenges as they work to support student success, and the mental health of students ranks high on the list of concerns. In fact, suicide is the second leading cause of death among 10- to 34-year-olds (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2019) and the tenth leading cause of death across all age groups in the U.S. (National Institute of Mental Health, 2019). Colleges have a unique opportunity to support student success through targeted efforts to reduce the suicide rate. House Bill 28 (Anielski, R-Walton Hills, OH), passed...
July 2019
As much as the faculty, classified professionals, and administration at San Diego City College take pride in the 1,500 classes and 200+ degree and certificate programs offered at the 60-acre urban campus, they also understand that the college’s role in supporting and empowering students goes far beyond the classroom. For instance, thirty-nine percent of college students experience significant mental health issues, yet two-thirds with anxiety or depression do not seek treatment (Active Minds, n.d.). Even more alarming is the fact that suicide is the second leading cause of death among college...
May 2018
The academic success outcomes of men of color remain deficient in community colleges compared to other student groups (Valliani, 2015). While many men begin their educational journey at community colleges, most African American and Latino men do not reach degree completion (Center for Community College Student Engagement, 2014). Men of color often report that they feel unwelcome in college environments because of negative stereotypes associated with their physical appearance and challenged by academic unpreparedness and financial stress (Gardenhire-Cooks, Collado, Martin, & Castro, 2010;...
May 2018
Mesa Community College (MCC) was the first college, among six in the nation, selected by Apple to launch the iOS app development project and the first to offer associated courses for academic credit. The college views the Everyone Can Code project as more than a collection of courses. This is a foundation for a successful future for a diverse body of students. MCC faculty embrace the concept that the key to innovation is to provide something that is unusual, to test the norms, to do it in a timely and meaningful manner, and to embrace teaching excellence through diversity and differentiated...
September 2017
It is a glaring truth. No matter how broad the scientific research or how far academia have reached to date, science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) fields have been and remain a man’s world. Although there have been some changes in the last few decades, for the most part, women and minorities still face disparities (Office of Science and Technology Policy and Office of Personnel Management, 2016). There are many negatives associated with women and minorities’ limited participation in STEM fields, such as repression of creativity, loss of true innovation (Del Giudice, 2014), lower...
June 2017
Communication faculty often have a unique opportunity to hear students’ own stories. These stories permeate the work of learning public speaking. Faculty members at Pellissippi State Community College recently launched In Our Words, a public forum in which students share their stories with audiences beyond the public speaking classroom. Public speaking generally benefits both speaker and audience, and In Our Words certainly does that. Benefits also extend to the Communication Studies department and other areas of the college. Process Pellissippi State has, for years, had a robust faculty...