ERIC Number: ED396793
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1996
Reference Count: N/A
Doing Education with Business and the Middle Child Syndrome: Promise or Threat to the Community College Mission.
Raisman, Neal A.
As the "middle child" between universities and K-12 schools, community colleges have often sought to carve out their own niche by embracing programs rejected by other institutions, such as non-collegiate training for business and industry. There has been growing concern, however, over the colleges' shift from a mission that balances access to baccalaureate study and skilled semi-professional education to one that increasingly emphasizes vocational and business education. The community college mission has historically included a focus on transfer, general education, workforce training, remedial education, and community services, but as leadership and legislation continue to promote the vocational aspect, especially consulting-based activity, the access and transfer mission may well be diminished. The colleges must be able to respond to diverse learning and career goals of their students and respond to the specific needs of their communities. While business training can and does meet the service aspect of the colleges, it should be recognized that these programs are not collegiate and will not fit into the educational goals of students attending to attain a degree. The number of liberal arts students enrolled in community colleges is an indication that students still appear to be seeking access to baccalaureate degrees. Community colleges may therefore benefit themselves by reconfirming their comprehensive mission, emphasizing collegiate access and transfer functions, and keeping workforce specific programming within a careful balance. Contains 47 references. (TGI)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Rockland Community Coll., Suffern, NY.
Identifiers: Customized Training