Advising and Peer Connections: Helping Transfer Students Earn a College Degree

Jumping right into a four-year university after high school isn’t for everybody. There are numerous reasons why, for some students, attending a community college and then transferring to a four-year university is the most prudent decision. For some, it’s financially practical. The low cost of community college allows students to virtually cut the cost of … Continue reading “Advising and Peer Connections: Helping Transfer Students Earn a College Degree”


Sperber’s ‘Beer and Circus’—An Unintentional Argument for Community College?

The year 2000 saw the publication of Beer and Circus, the notable book by former Indiana University professor Murray Sperber. It was a big step forward for the analysis of higher education, offering considerable insight into the sociology of college students, faculty research, and poor academic standards for colleges. Though its subtitle prepared the reader … Continue reading “Sperber’s ‘Beer and Circus’—An Unintentional Argument for Community College?”



A Dreamer of the Golden Dream: Jerry Brown’s Future for Higher Education

The title of this article alludes to Joan Didion’s famous essay about “love and death in the golden land,” a cautionary tale about the wreckage left behind when dreams collide with reality. Historically, California has always attracted dreamers and today one of the state’s biggest dreamers is Governor Jerry Brown, who once said, “A politician … Continue reading “A Dreamer of the Golden Dream: Jerry Brown’s Future for Higher Education”


North Carolina Works to Ensure Success of Military Students

Drone pilots have assumed an increasingly valuable role in military operations. Soon they may be able to leverage their unique experience into academic credits through the North Carolina Community College System. That is just one among a multitude of military occupations and training modules for which the UNC System and Community College System might one … Continue reading “North Carolina Works to Ensure Success of Military Students”


The Conservative Case for Community Colleges, Part I: To Parents

For many parents, the prospect of sending their kids off to college can be daunting. If the price tag alone doesn’t scare them silly, there are more than enough stories about campus rape culture, fatal binge drinking, the opioid crisis, snowflake syndrome, attacks on free speech, and lack of due process to keep parents awake … Continue reading “The Conservative Case for Community Colleges, Part I: To Parents”


North Carolina’s Apprenticeship Program Offers Big Potential at Small Cost

Recently, a bill was introduced in the North Carolina legislature that would shift control of the state’s apprenticeship program from the department of commerce to the community college system. The goal is to streamline the program and make it more aligned with some of the community colleges’ workforce development initiatives. The program, “ApprenticeshipNC,” has been … Continue reading “North Carolina’s Apprenticeship Program Offers Big Potential at Small Cost”


Concerns Raised Over NC’s Dual Enrollment Program and Possible Community College Misconduct

Each year, roughly 1.4 million high school students take college courses. This is made possible by dual enrollment programs, which give those students opportunities to earn credits and work toward a college degree or technical vocation. Over 70 percent of courses are offered by community colleges. Such programs were praised recently by the Department of … Continue reading “Concerns Raised Over NC’s Dual Enrollment Program and Possible Community College Misconduct”


Americans used to save for college; moves toward making it free are not progress

I am strongly committed to higher education, especially in the sciences and math where we are lagging other countries. I also understand that there are students of limited means, and they need a hand up in life. But we seem to no longer draw rational lines between serious students who need assistance, and the many non-serious students who squander it.


How the president’s "free community college" proposal will affect one state

The new federal proposal that the president is calling "America’s College Promise" is short on details but has inspired much commentary.

We’ll hear more on Tuesday in the State of the Union address and in President Obama’s next budget proposal, but he gave us enough information about the idea in a speech for us to estimate the potential program’s cost to North Carolina taxpayers.