(Pittsburg, CA) October 11, 2019 – California’s Los Medanos College was named today one of 150 community colleges eligible to compete for the 2019 Aspen Prize for Community College Excellence, the nation’s signature recognition of high achievement and performance in America’s community colleges. Los Medanos College was selected from a pool of nearly 1,000 public two-year colleges nationwide to compete for the $1 million Aspen Prize.
“Our faculty, classified professionals, and managers do incredible work every day on behalf of our students”, explained Bob Kratochvil, Los Medanos College President. “It is particularly rewarding to have an external organization with the reputation of the Aspen Institute acknowledge those efforts. Each of our employees played a tremendous role in achieving this honor. We are very proud to have LMC be recognized as among the elite community colleges in the United States.”
This is the second time that Los Medanos College has been honored as Aspen Prize eligible. Prior to this, the College was on the 2017 list. Awarded every two years since 2011, the Aspen Prize recognizes institutions with outstanding achievements in four areas: learning; certificate and degree completion; employment and earnings; and high levels of access and success for minority and low-income students.
Los Medanos College will move forward to the next round of the competition for the Aspen Prize for Community College Excellence by submitting an application to be reviewed through a rigorous evaluation for a spot on the top ten Aspen Prize finalists list. Top ten finalists will be named in May 2018. The Aspen Institute will then conduct site visits to each of the finalists and collect additional quantitative data. A distinguished Prize Jury will select a grand prize winner, finalist(s) with distinction, and rising star(s) in spring 2019.
More about the Aspen Prize for Community College Excellence
Valencia College (Florida) won the inaugural Aspen Prize for Community College Excellence in 2011, followed by co-winners Santa Barbara City College (California) and Walla Walla Community College (Washington) in 2013. Santa Fe College (Florida) won the Prize in 2015, and Lake Area Technical College in Watertown, South Dakota followed in 2017.
The 150 community colleges named today as eligible to compete for the 2019 Prize were selected from a pool of nearly 1,000 public two-year colleges nationwide using publicly available data on student outcomes. Located in 39 states in urban, rural, and suburban areas, serving as few as 300 students and as many as 95,000 students, these colleges represent the diversity and depth of the community college sector. This year, there are nearly 60 institutions eligible to compete for the Prize that were not eligible for the 2017 Aspen Prize. For a full list of the top 150 eligible institutions, visit: www.highered.aspeninstitute.org/aspen-prize.
The top ten finalists for the 2019 Aspen Prize will be named in May 2018. The Aspen Institute will then conduct site visits to each of the finalists and collect additional quantitative data, including employment and earnings data. A distinguished Prize Jury will select a grand prize winner, finalist(s) with distinction, and rising star(s) in spring 2019. To read more on the selection process, visit: www.highered.aspeninstitute.org/aspen-prize.
The Aspen Prize is funded by the Joyce Foundation and the Siemens Foundation.
The Aspen Institute College Excellence Program aims to advance higher education practices, policies, and leadership that significantly improve student outcomes. Through the Aspen Prize for Community College Excellence, the Siemens Technical Scholars Program, and other initiatives, the College Excellence Program works to improve colleges’ understanding and capacity to teach and graduate students, especially the growing population of low-income and minority students on American campuses. For more information, visit http://highered.aspeninstitute.org/.
The Aspen Institute is an educational and policy studies organization based in Washington, DC. Its mission is to foster leadership based on enduring values and to provide a nonpartisan venue for dealing with critical issues. The Institute is based in Washington, DC; Aspen, Colorado; and on the Wye River on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. It also has offices in New York City and an international network of partners. For more information, visit www.aspeninstitute.org.
To learn more about Los Medanos College, visit www.losmedanos.edu.