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TCC Ranked #1 College in Washington State

Posted: 8/23/2010 10:58:00 AM

Washington Monthly Ranks Tacoma Community College 17th in the Nation -- 1st in Washington State
Monday, August 23, 2010 - The Washington Monthly, an independent DC social research magazine, has ranked Tacoma Community College 17th among the community colleges in the country -- and number one in Washington State. The purpose of the list, according to Washington Monthly editors, is to determine for citizens and policymakers which of the nation's service-oriented schools are "laying the foundation for the kind of nation we want to become." The magazine measured and quantified how well individual colleges and universities were "meeting their public obligations in the areas of research, service, and social mobility," ranking schools based on the results.

2010 is the first year that the Washington Monthly has ranked community colleges. According to the Association of Community and Technical Colleges (ACCT), there are 1,166 community colleges in the United States.

Many of the colleges and universities who have traditionally earned high marks from the more widely-known U.S. News and World Report college lists, either do not rank at all, or ranked lower in the Washington Monthly's lists. Calling their lists "A Different Kind of College Ranking" the editors explained that "Instead of asking what a college could do for you, we asked, "What are colleges doing for the country?" and using criteria that indicate a college's commitment to service and creating opportunities for upward mobility for its students.

The nation's community colleges were rated on six measures that included: active and collaborative learning, student effort, academic challenge, student-faculty interaction, support for learning, and graduation rate. TCC's 63 percent graduation rate was in the top six of the community colleges that made the top 50.

While the 4-year colleges and universities were ranked using different criteria than the community colleges, measuring "how well individual colleges and universities were meeting their public obligations in the areas of research, service, and social mobility," both were attempts to measure how well colleges give back to the communities that support them.

Say the editors: "...Yale might educate a disproportionate number of future hedge fund managers... but is it laying the foundation for the kind of nation we want to become? After all, colleges and universities do as much to shape the future as any institutions you can think of ... While there are plenty of guides out there that help students and parents decide how to spend their tuition dollars wisely, there wasn't one to tell citizens and policymakers which colleges were spending their tax dollars wisely."

For the complete (Sept. /Oct. 2010) report, go to:

For additional information, please contact:
Dale Stowell
Director of Marketing, Communication, and Outreach
Phone: 253.566.6050

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