Seward County Community College/Area Technical School has landed a spot on the list of the “Most Promising Places to Work in Community Colleges 2015,” from The Center for Higher Education Enterprise (CHEE). The study was conducted as part of a partnership with Diverse: Issues in Higher Education and NISOD, a membership organization committed to promoting and celebrating excellence in teaching, learning, and leadership at community and technical colleges.
“It’s really exciting to be listed by Diverse magazine for this award, because it reflects the college’s commitment to our local community,” said SCCC/ATS President Dr. Duane Dunn. “Our student demographic is incredibly diverse, from farm kids to international students. It’s one of our points of pride.” Through a variety of programs and internal studies, SCCC/ATS has created an effective and responsive set of supports to help an array of students from various backgrounds. Many students transition to campus through the Adult Basic Education programs at the Colvin Learning Center. Others are recent high school graduates and the first in their family to attend college. Still more travel across the globe to join students from more than 29 countries on campus in Liberal.
The study focused on workplace diversity, staffing practices, and work environment, and used a web-based survey approach to elicit information such as family friendliness, salary and benefits, and professional development opportunities, to name a few. A multipart, weighted algorithm was used to classify the responding institutions in the final phase on analysis.
“I am extremely excited about this year’s honorees,” said Dr. Edward J. Leach, NISOD’s Executive Director. “These community and technical colleges are very deserving of this recognition because of their outstanding work to enhance equality, diversity, and inclusion across their campuses.”
Ralph Newell, vice president of business development and technology for Diverse, remarked, “We were excited to see the geographic diversity of the schools recognized. We were even more pleased that these community colleges are not the more recognizable systems nationally, it speaks to the fact you don’t have to have a big name to succeed and do great work.”
And as principal investigator, Terrell Strayhorn shared, “CHEE is excited about releasing the results from the 2015 Most Promising Places to Work in Community Colleges study and we share this enthusiasm with our partners at NISOD and Diverse. This study yields insight into diversity practice at the nation’s community colleges and offers a useful tool for employers, career services staff, and job-seekers across the country. We hope it serves as a tool for the broader community college enterprise too.”
The list of the 2015 Most Promising Places to Work in Community Colleges (in alphabetical order) is:
Albany Technical College (Albany, GA)
Big Sandy Community and Technical College (Prestonsburg, KY)
Central Piedmont Community College (Charlotte, NC)
Genesee Community College (Batavia, NY)
Illinois Central College (East Peoria, IL)
Kilgore College (Kilgore, TX)
Lorain County Community College (Elyria, OH)
Luzerne County Community College (Nanticoke, PA)
Mountain View College (Dallas, TX)
New Mexico Junior College (Hobbs, NM)
Piedmont Technical College (Greenwood, SC)
Seward County Community College and Area Technical School (Liberal, KS)
South Florida State College (Avon Park, FL)
Southwest Virginia Community College (Richlands, VA)
Tallahassee Community College (Tallahassee, FL)
Zane State College (Zanesville, OH)
About NISOD: Created in 1978, NISOD is a membership organization committed to promoting and celebrating excellence in teaching, learning, and leadership at community and technical colleges.
About Diverse: Since 1984, Diverse: Issues In Higher Education magazine has been the nation’s premier publication covering the issues pertaining to underrepresented minorities in American higher education. Reaching more than 200,000 readers biweekly, Diverse has been recognized for its in-depth news coverage, provocative commentary, insightful special reports and original research.
About CHEE: CHEE is a university-wide, interdisciplinary research and policy center that promotes the important role postsecondary education plays in global society, especially the vital roles and responsibilities of public higher education. CHEE’s primary activities include research, policy analysis and outreach that will help make higher education more accessible, affordable, engaged and all-around excellent.