Community College Leadership and Technology

Community College Leadership and Technology

Petra A. Robinson (Rutgers University, USA), Tyra Metoyer (Texas A & M University, USA), David Byrd (Texas A & M University, USA), Dave Louis (Western Michigan University, USA) and Fred A. Bonner (Texas A & M University, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-0062-1.ch015
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Community colleges serve an important role in local communities across the United States. These institutions, based on their mission, seek to fulfill a social contract as partner in community development in the 21st century. Their function in local and the wider US community is undeniably important; more than half of the college students enrolled in the United States attend community, technical, and junior colleges (Pew Research Center, 2009). Community college leaders face especially challenging times given the economic, social, political, and technological contexts within which these institutions operate. This chapter brings focus to the various nuances of community college educational leadership with specific focus on technology in this new virtual age.
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Historical And Contemporary Roles Of Community Colleges In America

Community colleges have been referred to as a uniquely American invention (Diener, 1986; Thelin, 2004) because they provide training and education that are as critical to the economic strength of our country as they are egalitarian in providing for the needs of the traditionally under-educated. Community colleges have typically served three major purposes. First, these institutions have met the local needs of their community by delivering adult education programs, education outreach services, vital vocational training for specific occupations, and general education courses and developmental preparation necessary for students to transfer to four-year universities (Rhoads & Valadez, 1996). Beyond these primary roles, the American community college has evolved to incorporate the unrestricted duty to expand access to higher education for underrepresented populations and to make college attendance a real possibility for those who may otherwise have gone un-served (Cohen & Brawer, 2008).

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