Community college - AEI

Community college

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The associate of arts degree frequently falls short as a pathway to a bachelor’s degree, leaving many students to compete in the job market without a higher-level degree and without high-value, marketable skills. In a new report, AEI Visiting Scholar Mark Schneider explores how to increase the labor market value of the A.A. degree.

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Because A.A. degrees are designed as transfer credentials and not to equip students with marketable skills, hundreds of thousands of these A.A. graduates are losing thousands of dollars in earnings year after year. Students need more information to help them find community college programs that deliver marketable skills, and community colleges should reform A.A. programs to add elective skills-based courses or embed high-value, industry-recognized certifications into those courses of study.

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Though much of our approach toward fighting poverty involves providing money, it is important to realize that human capital can play a bigger role than financial capital.

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On this AEI Events Podcast, AEI’s Andy Smarick and John P. Bailey host two panel discussions—the first on high schools, the second on community colleges—featuring new research and expert analysis on career and technical education.

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Among the education providers in a position to help close the middle-skills gap, community colleges may be the only institution with the reach and scale to make the difference that’s needed.

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Some certificate and associate degree programs in technical and health fields at community colleges can result in higher earnings than some bachelor’s degree programs.

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The American Enterprise Institute hosts an event on reforming career and technical education in high schools and community colleges.

 

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In this episode of the “New Skills Marketplace” podcast, Diane Jones from the Urban Institute discusses the role of community colleges and apprenticeship programs in closing the skills gap.

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Kentucky’s plan to make only certain credentials tuition-free has flaws.

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A free community college program in Oregon sees most of its benefits flow to wealthy students.

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In Gary, 21st Century Charter School is helping its students not only to desire education after high school, but also to have the credits necessary to do so without taking on crushing higher education debt.

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