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Maryland Community Colleges Exceed Governor O’Malley’s Goals for College Completion

Degrees Awarded Exceed Goal by 109 percent; Certificates Awarded Exceed Goal by 154 percent

Over 400 Maryland community college faculty and staff will meet at the 4th Annual Summit on Completion, a full day forum focused on Maryland’s groundbreaking higher education reform measure, the College and Career Readiness and College Completion Act of 2013. Spearheaded by the Maryland Association of Community Colleges, this innovative legislation has gained national attention for its comprehensive approach to preparing students for college and career.

The December 6 forum offers 24 workshops allowing educators to collaborate on best practices for increasing the number of students who achieve a college degree or career credential. The Summit is hosted by the Community College of Baltimore County in Catonsville, Maryland.

“Today more than ever, your level of education predicts whether you live a life of financial security or uncertainty,” said Dr. Bernard Sadusky, Executive Director of Maryland Association of Community Colleges (MACC). “The value of an Associate’s degree, or a career license or certificate, available at any of Maryland’s 16 community colleges, is tremendous. Those students without at least some education after high school will be increasingly left out of the workforce and unable to compete in the digital economy.”

MACC first developed the Completion Summit in 2010 to ensure the state’s community colleges were prepared to meet Governor Martin O’Malley’s education goal that at least 55% of state’s adult population have a degree credential by 2025. For four consecutive years, Maryland community colleges have exceeded the goal set by the Governor.

Two of the legislative sponsors of the College and Career Readiness Act, Senator Paul Pinsky, and Delegate Anne Kaiser, will participate in a panel discussion with Secretary of Higher Education, Dr. Danette Howard, about the need for reforms in American higher education. Panelists will discuss how Maryland’s College and Career Readiness Act correlates middle and high school educational competencies with college level requirements in order to produce students who are ready for college and career.

“Over 75 percent of Maryland’s future job openings will require some type of post-high school training or education,” said Dr. Danette Howard, Secretary of Higher Education. “Right now there are 118,000 unfilled jobs in Maryland; most are unfilled because applicants lack the training or education required.”

The U.S. used to have one of the most educated populations in the world, but currently it ranks 14th compared to countries worldwide. Maryland’s population is highly educated compared to other states, but 39% of Maryland adults have a high school diploma or less. The College and Career Readiness Act was passed to maintain Maryland’s competitive advantage in the national and international economy, and to prepare Maryland’s students and workers for the digital age.

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