ERIC Number: ED407982
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1997-Feb
The American Community College: A Perspective.
Mahoney, James R.
Community colleges are democracy's colleges in the sense that the humanistic, inclusive, and flexible ideas at their core are democratic in tone and substance. Although these core ideas have not changed over time, the external pressures that shape program emphases, organizational structures, and community relations have. These forces include the private sector's escalating demands for better trained, higher skilled employees; the impact of new technologies; the reduction of state financial support; public concern over the cost of a college education; public concern about the integrity of higher education; the movement to establish national goals and academic standards for the K-12 system; the apparent tattering of the civic fabric of American communities; and the necessity of community colleges to prove that they are worthy postsecondary institutions. Although colleges' responses to these pressures have varied, three distinct models of responses have emerged: the niche model, which maintains that colleges can no longer be all things to all people and must develop their market niche; the steady-as-you-go model, which holds the belief that the current set of environmental forces are little different than other pressures that the colleges have had to deal with; and the managing-the-fury-model, which views the pressures as threatening and believes that change is a mandate, not an option. Contains 14 references. (HAA)
Descriptors: Access to Education, Accountability, Change Strategies, College Planning, Community Colleges, Democracy, Educational Finance, Governance, Institutional Characteristics, Institutional Mission, Models, Organizational Objectives, School Community Relationship, Social Influences, Two Year Colleges
Publication Type: Information Analyses
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A
Note: In: Lategan, Laetus, Ed. Introducing Community Colleges to South Africa: Regional, National, and International Perspectives. South Africa, University of the Free State, 1997.