ASCC ranked 20th among top community colleges in nation

Published 12:40 pm Thursday, August 26, 2010

MONROEVILLE – Alabama Southern Community College is one of the best community colleges in the nation according to America’s Best Community Colleges, a recent article in the Washington Monthly.

“Our college is ranked 20th among the best community colleges,” said Dr. Reginald Sykes, ASCC President. “We are honored to be recognized as one of the top 50 community colleges in the nation, but the fact that we ranked in the top 20 is an extra boost for the college and the communities that we serve. ASCC has a history of national awards and honors, but I believe this latest achievement is something that will forever put our college on the map as an outstanding institution.”

According to the Washington Monthly article, “While all the community colleges on this list are inexpensive, have open admission policies, and are largely unknown outside their local communities, they stand out in teaching and helping students earn degrees. When it comes to the quality of instruction they outperform not only their two-year peers, but many elite four-year research universities as well.”

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Although tuition at many four-year colleges starts at $20,000 a year, ASCC offers many of the same courses at a fraction of the cost. Wide selections of excellent university transfer and career programs, outstanding faculty and staff, small classes and a friendly atmosphere have proven to be the right formula for success for ASCC.

The article’s author, Kevin Carey, wrote, “So uncelebrated are America’s best community colleges that one thing the top ones tend to have in common is an under appreciation of just how good they are.”

Washington Monthly based its findings on the Community College Survey of Student Engagement (CCSSE). The CCSSE “gathers information about community colleges across the nation in order to determine which community colleges do the best job of adopting institutional practices and encouraging student habits that years of research have shown to be strongly correlated with higher levels of learning.” (

In 2007, Washington Monthly combined CCSSE results with graduation rates published by the U.S. Department of Education to create the first-ever list of America’s best community colleges. This year, Washington Monthly updated the list with all-new CCSSE data ranking more than 650 community colleges nationwide in order to identify the fifty best community colleges.

“Our occupational programs feature some of the best technology labs in the South and can prepare you for a great job in only two years. ASCC is also the best place to start if you’re looking to attend a traditional four-year college or university,” said Dr. Sykes. “Our graduates have distinguished themselves in every profession and career field.

“We are proud of ASCC, our achievements and the faculty and staff that work hard to make ASCC a great place to work and for students to learn,” added Dr. Sykes.

In 2005 ASCC’s innovative approach to individualized learning won the National Bellwether Award for Teaching and Learning presented by the Community College Futures Assembly. In 2006 ASCC again was recognized by the Community College Futures Assembly when it was chosen as a top-ten finalist for the National Bellwether Award for Workforce Development for ASCC’s Industry Alliance.