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The South’s rural community colleges in the new millennium

By Of The and Stuart A. Rosenfeld


If a president of a typical rural two-year college 50 years ago were magically transported to that same school on a morning in the year 2000, he—and it would almost certainly have been a male in 1950—would be hard pressed to recognize his institution. Apart from the obvious differences attributable to renovation, fashion, and technology that occur in virtually any educational institution over that many years, the colleges ’ missions, functions, and customers—even the name—have changed. In 1950, the college looked very much like an appendage of a university and, in fact, was called a junior college. The hallways were teeming with students—mainly middle class, young, and enrolled in liberal arts programs. But on a typical morning in 2000, most rooms look deserted because classes for the majority of the students [a], mostly working adults and many already holding post-secondary degrees, are scheduled in the late afternoon, evenings, or weekends. Learning spaces look more like places of work because many of the programs are technical or vocational, and they also are used by companies for training. Large numbers of part-time faculty probably are away at their day jobs

Year: 2011
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