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Two-year PNC Foundation grant will enable Montgomery College to prepare up to 96 educators with national Childcare Development Associate credential

Nearly 100 early childhood education professionals will have the opportunity to earn a nationally recognized credential that enhances their skill sets, thanks to a two-year grant of $117,030 awarded by the PNC Foundation to the Montgomery College Foundation.

The Child Development Associate (CDA) Credential™ is a nationally recognized certification for child development professionals and it indicates that a teacher has met a core set of competency standards, according to The Council for Professional Recognition.

This grant-funded initiative will provide up to 96 educators with a fully guided pathway to earn their CDA credentials during the 2019-20 and 2020-21 academic years (24 per semester). Students also will benefit from one-on-one advising by a qualified teacher or early childhood educator, two site visits, and lesson planning assistance, which will help these well-trained educators to prepare for a certification test and a CDA verification visit.

In addition, Montgomery College will grant up to six credits for prior learning to educators who earn their CDA credential, which will encourage their continuation towards an Associates of Applied Science in Early Childhood Education.

“The College is grateful to the PNC Foundation for this visionary gift. By empowering MC students in Early Childhood Education to earn more credentials, the Foundation is helping to create more skilled workers, which benefits us all,” said Dr. DeRionne P. Pollard, president of Montgomery College. “The gift is also an investment in narrowing the achievement gap, which, research shows, can be diminished by the early education of children.”

This year marks the 15th anniversary of the PNC Grow Up Great program, a bilingual initiative that helps children from birth through age five to develop a passion for learning that lasts a lifetime. Grow Up Great focuses on supporting high-quality educational programming for young children, their educators, and their families, because research has shown that the first five years of a child’s life are critical to long-term achievement.

“With the pathway program that Montgomery College has developed though their continuing education classes, the community will benefit by having more high-quality early childhood educators available in the county, many of whom will achieve national accreditation,” said Richard K. Bynum, regional president of PNC Bank, Greater Washington. “This program supports each participant’s entrepreneurial spirit and helps them access high-quality professional development. A win-win for these small businesses and for our youngest students.”

The first group of students will begin this grant-funded CDA preparation course this month.

About Montgomery College
Montgomery College is a public, open admissions community college with campuses in Germantown, Rockville, and Takoma Park/Silver Spring, plus workforce development/continuing education centers and off-site programs throughout Montgomery County, Md. The College serves nearly 60,000 students a year, through both credit and noncredit programs, in more than 100 areas of study.

About the PNC Foundation
The PNC Foundation, which receives its principal funding from The PNC Financial Services Group (, actively supports organizations that provide services for the benefit of communities in which it has a significant presence. The foundation focuses its philanthropic mission on early childhood education and community and economic development, which includes the arts and culture. Through Grow Up Great, its signature cause that began in 2004, PNC has created a bilingual $500 million, multi-year initiative to help prepare children from birth to age 5 for success in school and life.

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