ERIC Number: ED471538
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 2002
Building Institutional Capacity at Rural Community Colleges through Consortia.
Pennington, Kevin; Williams, Mitchell R.
According to this paper, rural community colleges face new challenges, which require openness to institutional partnerships that in the past may have been unthinkable due to traditional institutional competitiveness. These challenges include enrollment fluctuation, increased legislative scrutiny, calls for accountability, inadequate and inconsistent funding, and higher education's general loss of public esteem. The authors argue that institutional collaboration is practical for rural community colleges for four reasons: (1) the politics of educational reform has created the need for meaningful collaborative efforts between community colleges; (2) the transformation of the economy from technology-based to information-based has increased awareness of institutional interdependence; (3) struggling rural community colleges can gain insight from their sister institutions; and (4) as demands for accountability increase, collaborations can provide avenues to lower costs while sustaining availability, quality, and integrity of programming and services at rural community colleges. This paper defines an educational consortium as an alliance whose purpose is to serve their member institutions, with the mission of enabling its members to achieve, through cooperation, that which cannot be achieved alone. Rural community colleges in particular can benefit from academic consortia by giving the institutions more clout with local, state, and federal politicians; making business and industry alliances stronger; and increasing funding and grant opportunities. (Contains 11 references.) (Author/NB)
Publication Type: Information Analyses; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A