Why Rural Community & Tribal Colleges Matter
America’s 600 publicly controlled rural community and tribal colleges celebrate doors that they alone open. They provide access to general education for transfer; for-credit technical, vocational and occupational programs of 12 months to two years in duration that lead to high-skill, high wage jobs; workforce training for (a) recent high school graduates, (b) recent high school dropouts, (c) currently employed workers, and (d) the long term unemployed; and they provide community services, serving as regional cultural centers for the performing and fine arts.
Rural community and tribal colleges are centers of educational opportunity. They are the “neighborhood schools of higher education,” as noted community college scholar James C. Palmer has said. They are close to home and both representative and inclusive of their communities. They are the leading regional centers for cultural and fine arts in rural America—and this is particularly true at tribal colleges, which typically host key tribal historical documents and artifacts.
They create opportunities in place, and celebrate doors that they alone open. They are open-door, open access colleges that welcome all who desire to learn, regardless of wealth, heritage, or prior academic preparation or experience. They serve 3.3 million students at 600 colleges and 800 campuses, and are the fastest growing sector of U.S. community colleges.
This section is your resource for rural community and tribal college statistics, historical information, and fast facts.
WHICH DEFINITION DESCRIBES RURAL AMERICA!
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