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TCC TO LEAD $24.1M JOB-TRAINING INITIATIVE
U.S. Dept. of Labor selects TCC proposal among national grant awardees
[News Coverage]

HAMPTON ROADS, Va. (Sept. 26, 2011) – The U.S. Department of Labor has selected a proposal led by Tidewater Community College for a Trade Adjustment Assistance Community College and Career Training Grant. The grant awards over $24.1 million to TCC to coordinate a statewide community-college consortium project called Virginia RETHINKS Health Sciences Education.

TCC will work with the Virginia Community College System to implement the pioneering project aimed at increasing student success – taking students through training and program completion to job placement. The project will focus on health-professions career preparation, with the broader goal of modeling integrative strategies for myriad career programs and Workforce Solutions.

“The immense economic scope of this project perfectly suits the mission of community colleges and the Commonwealth of Virginia as a leading choice for employers to build and expand their businesses,” says TCC President Deborah M. DiCroce. The project will provide critical data from across the state to develop best practices for student completion. “This will ultimately benefit all students and any employer who hires a community-college completer,” adds DiCroce.

Employer partners for the project include health systems, hospitals, medical centers and insurers. Stakeholders include Virginia Hospital and Healthcare Association, Virginia Workforce Council and the Workforce Investment Boards.

The consortium of all 23 of Virginia’s community colleges will implement seven strategies that will contribute to the realization of the system’s Achieve 2015 strategic plan and the RETHINK re-engineering plan, culminating in an overall increase in the number of students graduating, transferring or completing a workforce credential by 50 percent, including increasing the success of students from underserved populations by 75 percent.

Designed to meet the needs of trade-impacted workers and support the DOL’s priority area, “Improve Retention and Achievement Rates and/or Reduce Time to Completion,” the project’s innovative strategies include:

  • a new Health Sciences Career Studies Certificate – a model for integrative strategies
  • new enterprise-wide technology tools for data evaluation and student enrichment, to include building on the Virginia Education Wizard, an award-winning online career and assessment system developed by the Virginia Community College System; impacting 15,000 students
  • a new model program to hire, train and certify Adult Career Coaches and Job Placement Coordinators; serving over 11,000 students, from start to job placement
  • a new automated early warning and intervention system will consistently implement the evidence-based strategy of “intrusive” or “active outreach” advising at all colleges; impacting 12,000 students
  • completion of a new modules-based Developmental Education Curriculum in math, reading, and writing; serving 41,000 students during the grant period

TCC has provided health professions education since its inception, presently offering 15 specialties, including registered nursing in its Beazley School of Nursing. This fall the college opened its new Regional Health Professions Center, a 65,000 square-foot facility that immerses students in medical simulations replicating the most advanced workplace settings. In addition, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services selected TCC in 2010 to lead one of five national regions to educate information technology professionals in healthcare through a $16 million grant.

Virginia’s Community Colleges, under the leadership of Chancellor Glenn DuBois, are in the midst of a reengineering project that has all 23 community colleges seeking creative and innovative ways to meet Virginia’s unmet needs in higher education and workforce training. The effort is part of a six-year strategic plan called Achieve 2015, with five measurable goals focused on both serving more students and helping them succeed. System-wide, Virginia’s Community Colleges reach more than 400,000 students through both credit and workforce programs.

Through the Trade Adjustment Assistance Community College and Career Training Grant, the Labor Department is awarding approximately $500 million this year. According to the DOL, the grants will support the development and improvement of postsecondary programs of two years or less that use evidence-based or innovative strategies to prepare students for successful careers in growing and emerging industries. The program, administered by the DOL and the U.S. Department of Education, furthers efforts to ensure that by 2020 the United States once again has the highest proportion of college graduates in the world. (U.S. DOL news release)

News Coverage:

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Laurie White
Communications
757-822-1085


Tidewater Community College - the largest provider of higher education and Workforce Solutions services in Hampton Roads - served more than 46,000 students in 2010-11. The 16th highest associate-degree producer in the nation, TCC offers more than 150 programs including business administration, culinary arts, general studies, modeling and simulation, network security, nursing, and automotive technology. Among the fastest-growing two-year institutions in the United States, TCC was founded in 1968 as a part of the Virginia Community College System. The college serves the South Hampton Roads region with campuses in Chesapeake, Norfolk, Portsmouth and Virginia Beach as well as the TCC Jeanne and George Roper Performing Arts Center in Norfolk’s theater district, the Visual Arts Center in Olde Towne Portsmouth, the Regional Automotive Center in Chesapeake, and the Regional Health Professions Center and the Advanced Technology Center in Virginia Beach, as well as the Regional Workforce Solutions Center in Suffolk. Forty-five percent of the region’s residents attending a college or university in Virginia last fall were enrolled at TCC. For more information, visit www.tcc.edu.

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