Community College Baccalaureate Association Celebrates Historic Expansion During 2022 Annual Conference in Tucson


The nation’s top community college baccalaureate experts and higher education scholars gathered this month in Tucson, Arizona for the Community College Baccalaureate Association (CCBA) annual conference to explore “Promising Practices for Access & Equity.”

“Since we walked out of our 2020 conference in Seattle and into a global pandemic in the midst of a country in an economic and workforce crisis, community college baccalaureates gained more momentum than ever and are now recognized nationally as an effective social justice strategy. Not just as a higher education strategy, not just a baccalaureate attainment strategy, but as a strategy that is helping to heal this country,” says CCBA President Dr. Angela Kersenbrock. “During those past 20 months, we have seen historic community college baccalaureate expansion in Ohio, Washington, Texas, California, and new legislation in Arizona.”

With 25 states and more than 144 community colleges now offering bachelor’s degrees, the CCBA continues to strive to ensure that all students who desire to pursue a baccalaureate degree can do so in a way that is convenient, accessible, and affordable.

“We believe an educated populace is the foundation of a free and prosperous society and the community college baccalaureate degree serves as a gateway to advanced career opportunities and an enhanced lifestyle,” Kersenbrock added. “We all know that higher education is the real equalizer and the value of a bachelor’s degree for the students and their families is truly priceless.”

In the spirit of that mission, this year the CCBA awarded five $500 scholarships supported by the CCBA Scholars Fund, which recognizes adult students in their quest to obtain relevant, rigorous, and workforce-focused community college baccalaureate degrees. The 2022 awards were sponsored by the CCBA Board of Directors, Emsi Burning Glass, Interact Communications, and MiraCosta College. Honorees include:

·       Anthony Hong, Rio Hondo College, CA
·       Esther Nair, MiraCosta College, CA  (pictured in attachment with Brian Bailey, VP Community College Sales for Emsi Burning Glass)
·       Tessa Patti, MiraCosta College, CA
·       Erin Shanahan, Walla Walla Community College, WA
·       Jennifer Weiss, Renton Technical College, WA

During the 2022 national conference, the CCBA also named four new board members:

·       Dr. Todd Allen Farmer, President, Weatherford College
·       Dr. Joyce Hammer , Vice President Instruction, Centralia College
·       Madeline Pumariega, President, Miami Dade College
·       Dr. Cynthia Spiers, President, Rhodes State College

Additionally, Dr. Roberta C. Teahen, associate provost emeritus and faculty at Ferris State University, will now serve as board chair while outgoing chair, Mike Hansen, former president of the Michigan Community College Association, will remain on the board as a member.

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