ERIC Number: ED269115
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1986-Mar
Reference Count: 0
Positioning Community Colleges via Economic Development. ERIC Digest.
Community colleges, because of their late arrival in the development of American education, have suffered from an image and identity problem since their inception. To deal with this problem, community colleges should position themselves as unique community-based service-oriented colleges and market a specific focus to the general public. The first and most important step in the positive positioning of a college involves a commitment from top administration to a strategic marketing process that includes a clear focus of institutional mission, a clear understanding of whom the college serves, and precise knowledge of what makes its services unique. Throughout this positive positioning process, community colleges must view themselves as part of the mainstream of their communities and develop programs and services to meet the identified needs of their external publics. One fundamental and natural connection between colleges and their communities is in the local economy. This connection should be used as a major vehicle for positioning community colleges in the public's mind as a respected and integral part of society. A positioning strategy related to economic development would involve the following steps: (1) the college president must believe in and gain acceptance for the marketing mission; (2) a strategic action plan must be developed with input from internal and external publics; (3) the college must get involved with its community's economic development and chamber of commerce activities by, for example, developing a small business assistance center, assisting in visitation teams to compete for relocating industry, customizing industry-specific training programs, and publicizing the college's role in these activities; and (4) the college must follow through with its commitment and develop a reputation for integrity, responsiveness, and cooperation. (RO)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; ERIC Publications; ERIC Digests in Full Text
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Teachers; Practitioners
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: ERIC Clearinghouse for Junior Colleges, Los Angeles, CA.