Reviews a wide range of efforts underway around the country to improve access of disadvantaged young people to community colleges, both for those still enrolled in high school and for those who have dropped out.

The importance of community college to the education and vocational training of our nation’s low-income youth and working adults cannot be overstated. These institutions have a range of educational offerings, from two-year degrees to nondegree and vocational programs focused on a wide range of subjects, to match the increasing diversity of their students. Many of these programs can provide the post-secondary credentials needed by low-income youth and working adults to increase their labor market earnings, and the overall skills needed to keep the American workforce productive and competitive.This paper reviews "both the promise of community colleges as a source of skill development for low-income students, as well as the problems that currently limit their success with this population. We then review a wide range of efforts by community colleges and states, with funding from private foundations as well as the federal government, to improve enrollments and completion rates among disadvantaged youth and adults. These efforts include:

• Systemic reforms at the state level, including regulatory changes, legislative initiatives, and administrative modifications to better link community colleges and labor markets.

• Instructional, curricular, and program reforms at community colleges to provide skills remediation, labor market preparation and support services to low-income students.

• Efforts aimed at disadvantaged youth, including those still in high school as well as dropouts, to better connect them to community college and labor market opportunities" (p.2). (Abstractor: Author and Website Staff)

Full Publication Title: Strong Students, Strong Workers: Models for Student Success through Workforce Development and Community College Partnerships