Articles about – and of interest to – Washington state community and technical colleges
Tuesday, January 13, 2015
News Links | January 13, 2015
SYSTEM NEWS | OPINIONS
community college plan watched closely here
Spokane's two community colleges [Spokane
Community College and Spokane Falls Community College],
along with North Idaho College in Coeur d'Alene, are closely watching
President Obama's plan to provide two free years of higher education
nationwide. The White House proposal was rolled out late
last week and is largely modeled after a Tennessee program
that provides students with tuition-free community college enrollment
in that state.
The Spokesman-Review, Jan. 13, 2015
2-year college: Great deal for students, public
President Obama has a good idea: free community college. But Washington’s
Legislature has largely beat him to it. In most respects, this state’s
lawmakers haven’t covered themselves in glory funding higher education.
After the Great Recession hit, they relentlessly shifted the cost of
college to students, ratcheting up tuition while squeezing the schools
themselves. But the Legislature did try to compensate by raising
financial aid. Roughly 70,000 students are getting state need grants, which
are among the nation’s most generous financial aid deals. Washington
also offers the innovative College Bound Scholarship, which promises full
tuition – for both two-year and four-year schools – to low-income students
who sign up in the seventh and eighth grades. Half the state’s students are
eligible. That promise is conditional, though: Participants have to
maintain a C average, graduate from high school and stay out of trouble
with the law.
The News Tribune, Jan. 12, 2015
to employ 75 at Sumner winglet plant
GKN Aerospace will set up a winglet assembly plant in Sumner, near Tacoma,
after winning a contract to build the new advanced winglets for Boeing’s
forthcoming 737 MAX. The 57,000-square-foot facility will open in late
2015 and employ approximately 75 people at full production. This is
new work for Washington state. The winglets for the current model of the
737 are built in Austria by carbon-fiber component manufacturer FACC.
... The incentives package granted to GKN includes $400,000 from the
Governor’s Economic Development Strategic Reserve Fund, as well as a
$100,000 Job Skills Program training grant through the State Board of Community &
The Seattle Times, Jan. 12, 2015
honored with ‘Transforming Lives’ award Bates Technical
College student Raymond Power will receive a $500
Transforming Lives award from the Trustees
Association of Community and Technical Colleges at an event
in Olympia on Wednesday, Jan. 28. The annual award honors and recognizes
five students and alumni from the state’s 34 community and technical
colleges who have overcome significant barriers to achieve their higher
education goals . The award demonstrates how Washington community and technical
colleges help transform lives through support and education.
The Suburban Times, Jan. 12, 2015
Jessica Miller’s got a running start on life
Jessica Miller, 18, is a senior at Everett High School and this week's
Super Kid. I hear you're involved with Running Start at Everett Community College.
When did you start that program? I started last year as a junior and
did it my whole junior year and am finishing my senior year. A couple of my
friends were thinking about it and we decided to do it all together.
... What's it like to be on a college campus? I really enjoy it.
I get my AA this year as I graduate from high school. I like the freedom.
It's an awesome program.
Everett Herald, Jan. 12, 2015
College instructor receives award Bates Technical
College instructor Ed Young received the 2015 Exceptional
Faculty Award in a surprise announcement this week. The annual award
recognizes a faculty member who infuses their teaching with innovation and
provides an exemplary level of work performance that fosters and supports
The Suburban Times, Jan. 11, 2015
Electric car chargers
spark little interest from Cowlitz County drivers
Electric car drivers needing a charge in Cowlitz County are in luck. Too
much luck, probably. There are four charging stations in the county,
and only Castle Rock’s Cascade Select Market station gets used on a daily
basis. The others, all in Longview, have been used sparingly — or not
at all — since being installed. ... And the spots reserved for
charging at Lower
Columbia College’s new parking lot, open since this fall?
No charges yet. “I don’t think we have started really promoting it
yet,” college spokeswoman Wendy Hall said. “I would say we need to let
people know about it.”
Longview Daily News, Jan. 11, 2015
Free college would boost economy Yakima Valley
Community College President Linda Kaminski was just as
stunned as others across the country Thursday when President Barack Obama
detailed a proposal that would allow students to attend community college
tuition-free their first two years. “It’s not a surprise he supports
us,” Kaminski said in a telephone interview Friday. “It is surprising the
proposal came out the way it did.” The YVCC president said she
welcomed the ambitious idea, as the prospect of more highly educated
students in the Yakima area could boost the Valley’s economy and culture.
Yakima Herald, Jan. 10, 2015
Obama wants to
make community college free for everyone
President Obama on Friday outlined a new plan that would make
community college free for all students, regardless of income, as long as
they make good progress toward earning a degree and maintain a 2.5 grade
point average. ... In Washington state, the proposal was met with
enthusiasm. “We fully support President Obama’s vision,” said Marty
Brown, executive director of the State
Board for Community and Technical Colleges, in an email.
“It would be a huge boost to our students and Washington’s economy.
And, nationally, it would go a long way toward rebuilding
the American dream of opportunity and upward mobility.”
The Seattle Times, Jan. 9, 2015
promise of universal community college
Virtually all Americans enroll in high school these days and have the
opportunity to attend public schools for free, but a century ago, that was
not the case. In 1910, fewer than one in five Americans attended high
school; by the start of World War II, three-quarters of high-school aged
Americans were enrolled. The result is clear: decades of innovation,
economic growth, and social mobility driven by a smarter, more skilled
American population. The timing of President Obama’s proposal today to
extend this idea to the first two years of college could not be better.
Partnering with states, the federal government would make community college
free for many students, promising to dramatically expand the number of
Americans who attain post-secondary skills. ... Graduates from
Washington state’s Walla
Walla Community College earn an average annual salary of
$42,000 immediately after graduating, growing to $57,000 five years later.
Time, Jan. 9, 2015
college? Local schools and students like the idea
President Obama is grabbing the attention of the younger generation with
his idea for two years of community college for free. "Put simply
what I’d like to do is to see the first two years of community college free
for everybody who’s willing to work for it" Did he say
free? "Free for everybody who’s willing to work for
it" The idea sounds great to Yakima Valley Community College
students. ... Better buses won’t turn the economy around — but well educated
people can — the folks at Columbia Basin College
believe this idea could be a win-win for everyone.
KAPP TV, Jan. 9, 2015
College leaders, students react to free college plan Bellevue College
students, busy finishing up the first week of the new quarter on Friday,
learned about President Obama’s plan to pay for the first two years of
community college for roughly 9 million students nationwide each year.
KIRO TV, Jan. 9, 2015
local students react to Obama plan for free community college
If Congress grants President Obama his wish, community college students may
get two free years of education. Obama unveiled his proposal, called
“America’s College Promise,” Thursday evening. Lower Columbia College
president Chris Bailey expressed concerns over the program’s estimated $60
billion price tag. “The devil will be in the details,” he said by
phone Friday. Bailey estimated LCC’s budget has been reduced 20
percent since 2008 and said Obama’s plan may deepen the college’s woes if,
for example, it doesn’t add extra money into the system and simply
reallocates federal funding dollars. Bailey was also concerned that the
plan could affect funding for non-qualifying programs.
Longview Daily News, Jan. 9, 2015
Smoking ban is a big success
Once in a while, voters in all 39 counties of the state agree on something
clear-cut and specific, the law is implemented, and is effective. Crazy, we
know. But it's important to remember we can get things done, for the
greater good. Initiative 901 of 2005, which bans smoking in all public
buildings and workplaces has been such a success, accomplishing, for the
most part, what voters hoped it would. ... long with hospitals, some
college campuses have also banned smoking, including Everett Community College.
Again, laudable, but an unintended consequence is that three or four blocks
of public sidewalk behind the school have become a de facto smoking area,
which is unfair to neighbors, including the elementary school next door.
... In the big picture, smokers (and fewer of them) running out of
places to smoke is an excellent thing, quite intended.
Everett Herald, Jan. 9, 2015
Technology instructor granted tenure Clover Park
Technical College is proud to announce Surgical Technology
Instructor Ronda Armstrong was awarded tenure by the Board of Trustees Dec.
10. Armstrong graduated from CPTC’s Surgical Technology Program in 2005,
and while she worked in the industry she also worked as a lab assistant and
substitute for the program. She became a full-time faculty member in 2010
and soon after started the tenure process, where she went through a
demanding review process and evaluation by a tenure committee.
The Suburban Times, Jan. 9, 2015
stereotype: Number of male nurses up at Centralia College Centralia College
is is bucking national trends with its nursing program, a career field which
is typically dominated by women. The college has seen an increase in
male students in the past two years with 11 of the 48 being male,
accounting for almost 23 percent of its program. The national average is 5
Centralia Chronicle, Jan. 8, 2015
drop outs getting a second chance
KEPR is checking back on a program that allows high school drop outs to go
get their diploma *without going back to their old high school, and without
settling for a GED. KEPR looked at the High School Academy [a partnership
with Columbia Basin
College] and how it can help many of our local dropouts.
... The program has already grown incredibly since it started a couple
of years ago but the director says there are still plenty of seats left to
KEPR TV, Jan. 7, 2015
TRENDS| HORIZONS | EDUCATION
Lawmakers will continue to look for ways to measure the value of a college
degree. Acknowledging this, a group of three higher education associations
say they want to help that conversation be more informed and
comprehensive. The groups, which represent the various sectors of
public higher education, on Thursday released a draft discussion guide for
how to track what happens to students after college.
Inside Higher Ed, Jan. 9, 2015
scholarship plan right for Spokane
A unique public/private scholarship program is putting down roots in
Spokane, which should enable more area students to take advantage of a
program that can work for them, and the state’s economy. Spokane
County has been underrepresented in the pool of applicants for Washington
State Opportunity Scholarships, and therefore underrepresented among the
winners. But the hiring of a senior program officer for the region should
raise the program’s profile. It fits Spokane well.
Spokesman-Review, Jan. 9, 2015
POLITICS | LOCAL, STATE, NATIONAL
bill to protect student data, but not in higher education
The abundance of data being collected on students has been celebrated as an
opportunity to “personalize” education. But privacy advocates have long
warned that digital paper trails might leave today’s students exposed if
their personal information fell into the wrong hands. The White House
announced on Monday that it would be taking up the cause of student
privacy, pushing legislation that would “prevent companies from selling
student data to third parties for purposes unrelated to the educational
mission,” according to a news release. However, the bill, called
the Student Digital Privacy Act, would focus on students in
elementary and secondary schools, not college students, according to
The Chronicle of Higher Education, Jan. 13, 2015
Besides money, what will lawmakers debate?
Washington state lawmakers convene today in Olympia, where hulking budget
decisions loom. ... Some lawmakers want to see more students
taking college classes while still in high school. Two bills already
filed in Olympia would expand the state’s College in the
High School program to include 10th graders, instead of only 11th and
12th graders. The program offers college-level academic courses in high
schools for a fee.
The Seattle Times, Jan. 12, 2015
New higher ed
President Obama’s proposal to make community college free could rearrange
the relationship between the federal government, states and
colleges. Behind the talk of a free two-year college education is
a shift in the federal government's role. Conservatives are saying
the president’s plan may go too far — calling it a
federal regulatory regime dressed up as a free tuition plan. For others, a
federal government that spends more than $140 billion a year on higher
education is justified in attempting to get the right bang for its
buck. The White House said its effort would involve "restructuring the
community college experience."
Inside Higher Ed, Jan. 12, 2015
Community college advocates like the spirit of President Obama's
blockbuster free community college proposal. It’s the details, many
still unknown, that worry some. The White House wants $60
billion over a decade to go toward filling in tuition gaps for all
Americans who meet the plan’s requirements. Several leaders at
two-year colleges applauded the bold funding request, which they said could
help millions of people, many of whom otherwise might not have
considered attending college.
Inside Higher Ed, Jan. 12, 2015
President Obama traveled here Friday to make his first
full-fledged pitch for tuition-free community college, as White House officials
confirmed that the ambitious proposal would cost about $60 billion over the
next decade. Speaking to several hundred students and
faculty at Pellissippi State Community College, Obama presented
his plan as an economic imperative. He also said it was based
on responsibility -- of individual students, of colleges and of
states in boosting their spending on higher education.
Inside Higher Ed, Jan. 12, 2015
pay at community colleges now — and how Obama’s proposal might change that
President Obama just proposed a partnership between the federal
government and states that would waive two years of tuition at community
colleges for students who meet certain criteria. That sounds
significant — and it is. But to grasp the real impact of the plan, it’s
important to understand what students pay to attend community college right
now. How might the proposal change that?
The Chronicle of Higher Education, Jan. 9, 2015
Who has a stake
in Obama’s free community-college plan?
President Obama’s proposal to make community college
free is getting an enthusiastic reception from two-year colleges and
their advocates across the nation. Not surprisingly, though,
representatives of other higher-education sectors aren’t quite so bullish.
One of their greatest fears: that the plan, if enacted, could end up
pushing a large number of students away from their institutions and into
community colleges. Here’s a look at several groups of institutions
with something at stake—and at how they’ve responded to the proposal.
The Chronicle of Higher Education, Jan. 9, 2015