Wayne Community College has been named a finalist for an award that recognizes promising practices among the nation’s two-year colleges.
The college is one of six community colleges, and the only one from North Carolina, announced as finalists for the American Association of Community Colleges 2018 Awards of Excellence in the “student success” category.
“It is truly an honor for Wayne Community College to be recognized by the American Association of Community Colleges as a finalist for an Excellence Award in this category,” said Dr. Gene Smith, WCC vice president of academic and student services.
“Wayne Community College’s focus is student success. Our faculty and staff strive every day to provide opportunities so that students can achieve their educational goals,” Smith said.
The student success initiative for which WCC has been recognized is completion strategies. Those strategies include guided pathways for programs of study with limited course options and reduced numbers of required hours. The objective is to eliminate redundant learning outcomes – the skills and knowledge students should acquire through a course – and courses that duplicate those outcomes.
Another technique the college is employing is automatically enrolling students in courses within their degree plans that lead to certificates and diplomas. This motivates students because they earn “stackable credentials” while working toward their ultimate goal of a degree.
In the last five academic years, the number of certificates, diplomas, and associate degrees earned by WCC students has increased by 30.4 percent and duplicated credentials increased by more than half. At the same time, the college’s enrollment decreased by 16 percent.
The AACC’s Awards of Excellence bring national visibility to exceptional work among the organization’s member colleges. Winners are chosen by a select committee of the AACC Board of Directors.
The finalists will be recognized and winners will be announced at the 98th Annual AACC Convention that will be held April 28-May 1 in Dallas, Texas.
The winning college will receive a trophy and mention in a story in the Community College Daily.
Wayne Community College is a public, learning-centered institution with an open-door admission policy located in Goldsboro, N.C. As it works to develop a highly skilled and competitive workforce, the college serves 13,000 individuals annually as well as businesses, industry, and community organizations with high quality, affordable, accessible learning opportunities, including more than 70 college credit programs. WCC’s mission is to meet the educational, training, and cultural needs of the communities it serves.