For the sixth year in a row, Montgomery County Community College (MCCC) is recognized nationally for its exceptional commitment to cultivating diverse, inclusive and supportive workplace and learning environments.
"Diverse: Issues In Higher Education" and the National Institute for Staff and Organizational Development (NISOD) have again named MCCC as one of the Most Promising Places to Work in Community Colleges across the country. With a focus on workplace diversity, staffing practices and work environment, the Diverse and NISOD research team uses a web-based survey approach to examine categories such as family friendliness, salary/benefits and professional development opportunities, to name a few, in its selection process.
MCCC shares this award with only 15 other community/technical colleges in the United States and is the only community college to earn this recognition for six consecutive years.
“This national award recognizes the College’s longstanding commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion,” said Dr. Victoria L. Bastecki-Perez, MCCC President. “I’m proud of the steadfast, collective efforts of our Board of Trustees, faculty, staff and administrators and the work they have done to make everyone feel welcomed, respected, valued, and heard on our campuses.”
Because of its strong commitment, MCCC was one of 10 colleges in the country selected to participate in the Achieving the Dream and the University of Southern California Race and Equity Center Racial Equity Leadership Academy for 2021. Representatives from each college are actively participating in a year-long program to develop a strategic racial equity plan to implement actionable solutions at their respective institutions.
In 2019, MCCC’s Board of Trustees unanimously approved the College’s Equity Statement, which serves as the foundation for MCCC’s student success work. Furthermore, the President’s Advisory Council on Equity and Social Justice – comprised of three active subcommittees for programming, policy review and assessment – contributes to and provides oversight and coordination for diversity programming, reviews College policies for equity-minded, inclusive, and culturally responsive practices while ensuring accountability.
Throughout the year, MCCC implements numerous programs and initiatives including the annual Presidential Symposium on Diversity, Richard K. Bennett Distinguished Lectureship Series - Racism in America, Deans' Lecture Series, Lively Arts Series performances and art exhibitions, and activities throughout Global Diversity Awareness Month including pride flag-raising ceremonies on National Diversity Day. In addition, the College holds training sessions on implicit bias, microaggressions, creative conversation and inter-development cultural inventories.
MCCC also promotes and advances professional development offerings through opportunities such as the Faculty Diversity Fellowship Program, which focuses on the careers of exceptional scholars from historically underrepresented groups. This one-year program provides each fellow with opportunities for teaching, student engagement, peer mentoring and professional development as educators and scholars. In addition to the Fellowship program, employees were provided opportunities this year to participate in safe spaces training and sessions focused on diversity and inclusion in the classroom.
With respect to hiring practices, the College has a diversity representative program, which plays an ongoing and critical role in the diversification of the workforce.
To promote a sense of belonging, MCCC encourages all graduates and employees to wear diversity cords as a part of the Commencement ceremony.
In addition to MCCC, other colleges honored include Clarendon College, Community College of Allegheny County, Florida State College at Jacksonville, Malcolm X College, McLennan Community College, National Park College, Nicolet College, Northeast Lakeview College, Northwest Vista College, Olds College, Pierpont Community & Technical College, Prince George’s Community College, Southern Crescent Technical College, St. Philip’s College and Wayne Community College.
NISOD is a membership organization committed to promoting and celebrating excellence in teaching, learning, and leadership at community and technical colleges. Since 1984, “Diverse: Issues In Higher Education” has been the nation’s premier publication covering the issues about underrepresented minorities in American higher education.