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2 Community Colleges in the 21st Century: Challenges and Opportunities Thomas Valleys Community colleges account for a substantial share of American higher education. Nearly one-half of all undergraduates in postsecondary institutions in fall 1997 were enrolled in community colleges (NCES, 2000~), and over the span of any given year, more for-credit under- graduate students enroll in community colleges than in baccalaureate- granting institutions. Although data on noncredit education are unreliable, community colleges have large and growing enrollments in noncredit courses. In many community colleges, more students enroll in the noncredit offerings than credit-bearing courses. Moreover, the types of students who enroll in community colleges are precisely those who are of most concern to scholars and policy makers. Indeed, minorities and immigrants are overrepresented in two-year schools. Community colleges are also much more likely than four-year schools to enroll first-generation postsecondary students or students from low socioeconomic backgrounds (NCES, 2000f). But after several decades of growth, community colleges now face a particularly challenging environment. Changes in pedagogic and production technology; state funding policy; the expectations of students, parents, and policy makers; demographic trends; and the growth of new types of educational institutions and providers are threatening established patterns of community college activities and potentially altering the role of the colleges within the wider land- scape of higher education. In this chapter, I first describe some of the challenges facing community colleges and then articulate the positive Thomas Bailey is director of the Institute on Education and the Economy and the Community College Research Center at Teachers College, Columbia University. This chapter is based on research funded by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. 59

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trends that may increase the demand for the services of community colleges and possibly lead to growing enrollments. The subsequent section describes how community colleges are responding to the challenges they face. One of the most important responses to those challenges has been a strategy in which the colleges seek new enrollments, revenues, and activities. The next section discusses the controversy about this missions-expansion strategy and identifies the reasons why this is attractive for community colleges. The chapter ends with some assessment of the balance of positive and negative trends with suggestions for policy and research. CHALLENGES . Throughout the 1960s, 1970s, and part of the 1980s, community colleges enjoyed strong enrollment growth. But in contrast to the previous decades, community college enrollments declined slightly during the 1990s. Total fall enrollments peaked in 1992 at 5.7 million students, but stood at about 5.4 million in 1998 (NCES, 2000d). For the first time, colleges in many states faced declining enrollments, although in some states they turned back up by the end of the decade. Moreover, during the 1990s, state funding priorities shifted away from higher education as prisons and health care accounted for larger shares of state budgets. Thus the share of state budgets going to higher education shrank from 12.2 percent in 1990 to 10.1 percent in 2000 (National Association of States Budget Officers [NASBO], 2000~. California is a good example. Like many state systems, the California public higher education system went through a severe budget crisis early in the decade. , ~ ~ While the economic recovery brought some improvements to state universities and colleges, that improvement did not keep pace with overall economic growth. And as the economy faltered in the first years of the new century, higher education bud- gets again came under pressure. As a New York Times article from September 11, 2001, stated, "State Colleges, Feeling Pinch, Cut Costs and Raise Tuitions." Moreover, within the public state systems, community colleges must provide an education with fewer resources than their four-year counterparts. For example, in the 1995-1996 school year, instruc- tional expenditures for public community colleges stood at $3,420 per full-time equivalent student, compared to $5,486 for public colleges and $6,946 for public universities (NCES, 2000e). Changing expectations about educational attainment will also influence community college enrollments. Increasingly, students state that they expect to earn a bachelor's degree. In 1980, 57 percent of all high school seniors stated that they either probably or definitely would graduate from a four-year college program. By 1997 that share had risen to over 77 percent (NCES, 2000f). Baccalaureate aspirations had risen even among students enrolled in community colleges. In the early 1980s, about 45 percent of such students stated that their 60 COMMUNITY COLLEGES IN THE 21ST CENTURY

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objective was to earn a bachelor's degree, while in the early 1990s, 70 percent had that goal (Schneider and Stevenson, 1999~. As students focus more on earning four-year degrees, we would expect to see ~~ ~ ^ ~ ^ ~~ . Indeed total enroll- ~ ~ , meets in these institutions did rise between 1995 and 1998 while community college enrollments were stable. And the NCES projects that four-year enrollments will grow faster over the next decade than enrollments shirt towards four-year colleges two-year enrollments (NCES, 2000e). To be sure, community colleges transfer programs are designed to provide access to four-year programs, but policy makers and researchers continue to criticize low transfer rates. Of those first-time college students who started at a community college in 1989, about 22 percent had transferred to a four-year school five years later (NCES, 2000a) and less than one-tenth of students who begin in two-year colleges ever complete a bachelor's degree (Schneider and Stevenson, 1999~. On the other hand, many students start two-year programs without a clear intention of transferring; therefore, it is difficult to evaluate any given transfer level. Nevertheless, as the number of students who do want a four-year degree grows, there will be more pressure to increase transfer rates. While policy makers pressure colleges to increase their transfer rates, they are also introducing measures that will increase the number of poorly prepared students who are attending these colleges. Develop- mental courses already absorb resources, and many students in regular college courses continue to need extra help. There are certainly some success stories (Hebel, 1999; Roucche and Roucche, 2001~. Devel- opmental education is a central component of the colleges' mission to provide access; however, large numbers of poorly prepared students complicate college efforts to improve transfer and graduation rates. Over the last two decades, the colleges' social and economic envi- ronment has changed. Other institutions including public and non- profit four-year colleges, community-based organizations, for-profit companies, in-house company trainers, and even other community colleges compete with community colleges in every function that they carry out. Many public four-year colleges have expanded their continuing education offerings, sometimes even offering full degrees, in an attempt to reach the type of adult and part-time student who have traditionally been served by community colleges. For-profit companies are offering short-term training, preparation for technical certifications, and full degrees at several levels. In the last few years, for-profit educational institutions such as the University of Phoenix and the DeVry Institutes have attracted significant attention as potential competitors. These institutions appear to have been able to attract adult students with strong occupational objectives. In the past, community colleges have prided themselves on being able to service precisely these types of students. The potential effect of computer-based distance education is perhaps the greatest unknown concerning the nature of the competitive land- THOMAS BAILEY 61

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scape. Certainly to the extent that distance education reduces the need for students to be at a particular place at a particular time and does so at a reasonable cost, the educational market will be a free-for- all. In general. research suggests that distance education is as effec- O O . . . .. . . . ~ . . tine at teaching substance as traditional classroom formats, although the students have to be motivated and organized. Community college professors argue that many of their students need the structure provided by the personal contact in the classroom. But whatever the problems and potentials, distance education is growing rapidly. According to data collected by the NCES, between 1995 and 1997, the share of community colleges offering distance education course grew from 58 to 72 percent. The equivalent shares for public four-year institutions were 62 and 79 percent. Most of the rest of these colleges (two- and four-year) said that they planned to offer courses through a distance education format within three years. (By 1997, private colleges were far behind.) And during those two years, distance education enroll- ments more than doubled to 1.6 million, although the number of students involved was smaller since these figures represent duplicated headcounts (NCES, 1999a). Although the continued growth of computer-based distance educa- tion seems certain, many questions remain about the impact of those developments on different types of institutions. At this point, most of the students who participate in computer-based distance education also take regular courses at the same institution. So far, students whose only contact with an institution is through an online course are more rare. But what can be said is that the growth and potential of distance education have created tremendous uncertainty in higher education. And community colleges may be at a disadvantage in the online edu- cational race, since they have much more restricted budgets than four- year public schools and lack the for-profits' access to capital markets. POSITIVE TRENDS While the colleges certainly face difficult challenges, several cur- rent developments are likely to increase the demand for a community college education over the next several years. First, the number of students in the typical college-going age is projected to increase sharply over the next decade. The children of baby boomers (the baby boom echo) are moving through their college years and are expected to expand college enrollments. The NCES projects that two-year college enrollments, which stood at roughly 5.7 million for fall 1999, will grow by 11 to 16 percent over the next decade (Gerald and Hussar, 2000~. In addition, the growing foreign-born population in the United States will also create an increasing demand for community college education. Immigration has already had an impact on college enroll- ments in California. The City University of New York (CUNY), New York City's public higher education system, was already almost 50 62 COMMUNITY COLLEGES IN THE 21ST CENTURY

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percent foreign born in the fall of 1997 while the population of the city as a whole was about 41 percent foreign born. And within the CUNY system, recent immigrants were overrepresented in the two- year programs (Bailey and Weininger, 2001). The patterns of postsecondary enrollments have changed over the last two decades, and these trends may also benefit community colleges. Much of the policy and research about college enrollment has often been dominated by a traditional conceptualization in which students attend college full-time immediately after high school and continue their enrollment uninterrupted until they graduate. But this view is increasingly misleading. If we define a traditional student as one who attends college full-time and full-year until they graduate, then only 17 percent of those who started college for the first time in 1989 were traditional students enrolled in four-year institutions. Another 17 percent were traditional students who started in two-year institutions. The remaining 66 percent of all first-time college students could be considered nontraditional students because either they attended part- time, interrupted their studies, or changed institutions. Furthermore, this share of nontraditional students would rise further if we counted students who delayed their first-time entry into college. And data from the High School and Beyond survey, which includes students who should have graduated from high school in the early 1980s, suggest that the number of nontraditional students grew significantly during the 1980s. For example, the percentage of undergraduates who attended more than one institution increased from 40 percent to 54 percent during the 1970s and 1980s, and data from the l990s suggest that this share will have increased to over 60 percent during the first years of the new decade (Adelman, 1999; NCES, 2000b). The growth of the importance of these diverse pathways through postsecondary education may favor community colleges, which are more oriented towards nontraditional students than four-year schools. For example, community college students are much more likely to enroll part-time and tend to be older than four-year college students (and therefore delayed or interrupted their enrollment). In 1998, 57 percent of part-time undergraduates were enrolled in community colleges. And 60 percent of four-year college students were 18-24 years old, while 48 percent of all two-year college students were in that prime college-going age (NCES, 2000c). Developments in technology and its effects on skill requirements will also continue to create a demand for community college education. Projections of the growth of employment in different occupations and trends in the earnings of workers with various levels of education 1These numbers are based on calculations by the author using data from the Beginning Postsecondary Students (BPS:89/94) survey. This data set, collected by the National Center for Education Statistics, includes a sample of students who entered post- secondary educational institutions for the first time in 1989. It collects data on those students through the 1993-1994 school year. THOMAS BAILEY 63

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show that at least some education beyond high school will be necessary to have access to jobs with earnings that might allow an individual to support with an a family. While college graduates do earn more than those associate degree, the value of one year of community college education is more or less equivalent to the value of a year of educa- tion at a four-year college. The same can be said for the economic value of credits earned at the two types of institutions (Grubb, 1999a; Kane and Rouse, 1995~. Between 1973 and 1998, the share of prime- age workers with some education beyond high school but no bachelor's degree more than doubled from 12 to 27 percent, while the share of the workforce that had a bachelor's degree increased from 16 to 30 percent (Carnevale and Desrochers, 2001~. While the role of associate degrees relative to bachelor's degrees remains in flux, these trends indicate that a growing number of jobs in the economy can be effectively held by workers with postsecondary education short of a bachelor's degree. Weak high school preparation will also continue to create a role for community colleges, essentially giving students a second chance to prepare for college-level work. NCES judged that even among families with incomes above $75,000 a year, less than 60 percent of high school graduates were either highly or very highly qualified for admission to a four-year college. Another 30 percent were either somewhat or minimally qualified. But the levels of preparation for high school graduates from families earning less than $25,000 a year were much worse. Forty-seven percent were not even minimally qualified and only 21 percent were either highly or very highly qualified for admissions to a four-year college (NCES, 2000f). And 40 percent of students at four-year colleges and 63 percent of community college students take at least one remedial course (NCES, 2000b). Moreover, several states, including New York and Georgia, and universities, such as California State University, are now trying to limit access to four- year institutions of students who need remedial help. In the case of CUNY, remedial education is concentrated at community colleges and is being phased out of the 11 four-year colleges. Thus all of these trends indicate that the role of community colleges providing develop- mental education will continue and probably increase. In the increasingly competitive postsecondary market, low tuition continues to be one of the community colleges' most important assets. This provides an important buffer against competition in states like California where full-year tuition at a community college in 1997 was less than $500. In contrast, community college tuition in New York State was over $2500 in that year (American Association of Community Colleges LAACC], 2001~. Trends over the last 20 years suggest that the community college tuition advantage over public four-year colleges has grown. In the 1971-1972 school year, four-year college tuition exceeded two-year tuition by $530 (2001 dollars). That gap grew steadily over the subsequent 64 COMMUNITY COLLEGES IN THE 21ST CENTURY

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three decades to $2016 for the 2001-2002 school year (College Board, 2001) THE COMMUNITY COLLEGE RESPONSE Community colleges therefore continue to enjoy many advantages. These include low tuition, local political support, and favorable demographic and educational trends, at least for the next few years, which will increase the potential supply of students at community colleges. The growing emphasis on noncredit education and on delayed, interrupted, multiple-institutional, and part-time college enrollment favors the more nontraditional history and emphasis of community colleges, at least when compared to public and nonprofit four-year institutions. But increasingly competitive markets, evolving student expectations, and significant changes in funding systems and pedagogic technologies have created a much more volatile and uncertain environment. How have community colleges responded to these developments? Community college administrators and faculty realize that their students and the public that funds them continue to expect the colleges to provide opportunities to transfer to four-year colleges. Many states are implementing a variety of policies designed to facilitate transfer from both academic majors (the traditional transfer-oriented majors) and occupational majors that have traditionally been viewed as terminal community college programs (AACC, 2001~. These policies include common course content and numbering systems that guarantee that credit earned at a community college will be accepted in that state's four-year schools. Indeed, over the last two decades, many researchers and college administrators and faculty have argued that the fundamental role of the community college is to provide more or less open access to lower division collegiate education. From this point of view, providing transferable liberal arts education is the core function of the colleges. It is through this function that community colleges realize their mission as the nation's primary site of equal access to higher education (Eaton, 1994; Cohen and Brawer, 1996; Brint and Karabel, 1989~. As Eaton (1994) observed: The collegiate community college is an extraordinary way for a democratic society to provide the best of higher education to as many people as can reasonably benefit. It is a profound statement of the unique value this country assigns to the individual and of its faith in the future. As a collegiate institution, the community college is unparalleled in providing, sustaining, and expanding educational opportunity and accomplishment within the society. (p. 5) Although state agencies and college faculty and staff have worked hard to promote transfer, this has not been the primary or most prominent community college response to the financial and political challenges that they have faced over the last decade. Much of the energy and enthusiasm at the college level is focused on other activities. All THOMAS BAILEY 65

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presidents will articulate their commitment to transfer education, but raising the transfer rate is rarely a college's first priority. During the last half of the 1990s, many community college staff turned their attention to pedagogic issues. This reform movement seeks to establish and strengthen the "Learning College." Improving the quality of teaching may be one approach to engaging young people and addressing the criticisms that the colleges do a poor job of retain- ing their students. While this has generated a great deal of useful discussion about teaching, according to Grubb (1999b), so far colleges have not introduced, on a widespread basis, the types of institutional changes necessary to bring about a significant change in teaching. Thus, many colleges, as a strategy to improve their position and do a better job of serving their constituencies, have tried to reform their current operations. But as a widespread response to budgetary pressure, many community colleges have sought new markets, new students, and new sources of revenues. One indication of this is the dramatic shift in the sources of community college funds. In the past, community colleges have depended primarily on state appropriations. In 1980, 53 percent of all college revenues were accounted for by this source. But by 1996, the state share of revenues had dropped to 34 percent (Merisotis and Wolanin, 2000~. The share of local revenues also fell slightly from 17.3 to 15.6 percent. In contrast, the revenue share accounted for by state and federal grants and contracts grew dramatically from 1 percent in 1980 to 18 percent by 1996. In any case, almost every community college is aggressively developing its noncredit and continuing education programs. The continuing education catalog of a community college will show a wide array of courses, although various types of computer-related training, including prepa- ration for IT certification exams, are increasingly common. At least in terms of the number of students (not FTEs), noncredit enrollments often surpass credit enrollments. These courses outside of the tradi- tional degree streams have many advantages for the colleges. They can be developed with fewer constraints associated with accreditation, state regulation, and faculty prerogatives. In many cases, they can generate surpluses (although in most cases, the accounting does not take account of the costs of space and college administrative over- head). Some noncredit enrollments are generated through customized training contracts with companies. In these cases, specific firms con- tract with a college (often the resources come from state economic development funds rather than directly from the company) to provide specific training, frequently at the company site (Dougherty and Bakia, 1999~. While such contracts represent a minority of noncredit enroll- ments, they often have a high profile and carry political significance disproportionate to their size, since they solidify partnerships with influential local businesses. While community colleges have broadened their missions by seeking out new types of postsecondary students, they have also sought to expand their roles vertically providing education to high school students 66 COMMUNITY COLLEGES IN THE 21ST CENTURY

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and in some cases postassociate degree students.2 The growth of dual enrollment programs for high school students has been one of the most talked-about trends in community colleges over the last year or two. Many colleges have enrolled hundreds of high school students, and, in some cases, those enrollments have increased dramatically in just a few years. College administrators, especially financial officers, are very enthusiastic about these efforts. Most of the offerings are in the social sciences and humanities and therefore do not need expen- sive equipment. Often, the courses are taught at the high schools and do not require additional space. And the instructors are usually adjuncts or high school teachers who are certified (essentially through their educational credentials) to teach college-level courses. The colleges therefore incur extremely low costs and are often reimbursed at the regular FTE rate. The students can usually earn both high school and college credit. So far, little is known about what happens to these students, but it is likely that many of them go on to four-year rather than two-year colleges. They therefore represent a new market for the community colleges. Alternatively, the involvement in the high school may increase the likelihood that the high school students will choose that particular community college. Therefore the dual enroll- ment programs have both financial and marketing benefits for the colleges.3 In another trend towards vertical expansion, community colleges in some states are also exploring the possibility of offering applied bachelor's degrees. Although this strategy has its proponents, it remains controversial and perhaps the preponderance of community college officials are skeptical. Some presidents argue that if community colleges start offering four-year degrees, their commitment to open access may be weakened. The differences in the conditions of employment of faculty at two- and four-year colleges may also pose a problem to this vertical expansion of the community college mission. Will com- munity college faculty working in four-year programs still be willing to teach the typically much higher community college load? Although the applied baccalaureate is definitely controversial, the movement does seem to be gaining some momentum. As they search for new functions and markets, the colleges try to find opportunities to exploit the skills and staff they already have. For example, a strong computer science department would give a college an advantage in offering noncredit programs to prepare stu- dents for information technology certifications. Nevertheless, in many cases, there is very little coordination among programs that are sub- stantively related. This is particularly true with regard to the coordi- 2See Smith-Morest (2001) for a full discussion of horizontal and vertical mission expansion. 30ther institutions are beginning to take notice of this market. Administrators at one college said that the community college, the local four-year public university, and two private nonprofit colleges were all offering courses in one local high school. THOMAS BAILEY 67

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nation between credit and related noncredit programs. Often the ex- tension or adult education functions are housed in separate buildings, use different faculty, and are managed by different administrators. Credit and noncredit programs in similar areas may actually be in competition for students or perhaps for relationships and partnerships with local businesses that could hire graduates and provide equipment. In many cases, the developmental education function is poorly coordinated with the core substantive programs. Some educators have argued that there are important pedagogic benefits to the coordination of academic and vocational education, and this does appear to be a strategy to reduce the potential conflict between transfer-oriented aca- demic programs and more applied occupational terminal degrees (Grubb, l999b). Nevertheless, while many community college faculty members and administrators favor the integration of academic and vocational instruction, it is difficult to find well-developed programs that actually put the approach into practice (Perin, 1998~. Thus, community colleges have responded to the challenges that they face by building out and by seeking new markets and functions, more than by focusing on more intensive efforts to improve what they are already doing. The result is that most community colleges are now institutions with multiple missions directed at addressing the needs and interests of a wide variety of constituencies. The list of missions includes transfer to a bachelor's program, terminal occupational edu- cation, developmental education, adult basic education, English as a second language, education and training for welfare recipients and others facing serious barriers to employment, customized training to r. , r , ~ , r ~ , , r. , ~ specific companies, preparation of students for 1nclustry certl~lcatlon exams, noncredit instruction in a plethora of areas (including purely avocational courses), small business development, and even economic forecasting. THE DEBATE ABOUT MULTIPLE MISSIONS This comprehensive strategy is not without its critics. Advocates of the primacy of the transfer function have been among the most vocal opponents of this broader strategy. . . . .. . . .. These critics argue that the growing emphasis on occupational eciucatlon, as opposed to academic- oriented transfer programs, has a negative effect on transfer rates. According to this view, an accent on vocationalism draws students into programs that largely do not encourage transfer. At the same time, vocationalism demoralizes the academic programs that encourage transfer (Dougherty, 1994~. Brint and Karabel (1989) think that this function has changed the entire mission of community colleges and turned them into vocational schools for low- and middle-class occupations. thus limiting students' opportunities for advancement. An institution established to "level up" disadvantaged segments of society has leveled down the critical literacy skills required for the degree programs. Clark (1961), in his classic work on community colleges, suggested that the 68 COMMUNITY COLLEGES IN THE 21ST CENTURY

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colleges played a functional role in adjusting (down) the expectations of students so that they would be consistent with the realities of the labor market. As the mission of community colleges evolved to meet a broader range of needs, the earlier emphasis on liberal education and on the transfer function appeared to take a back seat to the newer demands: vocational mission "eclipsed" the emphasis on transfer and liberal education (Wechsler, 1968; Katsinas, 1994~. While these critics oppose mission expansion because it weakens the academic transfer function, others object to the comprehensive model because it detracts from what they believe should be the core function of the community college vocational education (Blocker, Plummer, and Richardson, 1965; Grubb, 1996~. A growing number of policy makers and business leaders look to occupational education at the community college as a key site for building the work force for the next century (Hebel, 1999~. Indeed, Leitzel and Clowes ~ 1991 ~ consider vocationalism to be the most important distinctive niche of community colleges within the system of higher education. Clowes and Levine (1989) argue that career education is the only viable core function for most community colleges. According to Grubb (1996), the colleges and their role in society are not served well by the con- tinued criticism of the vocational function and a strong emphasis on transfer and academics: "One implication for community colleges is that they need to take their broadly defined occupational purposes more seriously.... They are not academic institutions ... even when many of their students hope to transfer to four-year colleges" (p. 83~. He argues that (1) the emphasis on academic education implies that there is only one valued postsecondary institution, defined by the research university; (2) community colleges cannot win the academic battle because they are not selective; and (3) community colleges mostly fail in large transfer numbers, therefore their clientele is left with outcomes of uncertain academic value. Another argument against a comprehensive strategy is more general- community colleges simply cannot do everything well and therefore must choose a more limited set of objectives on which to focus. As Cross (1985) asked, "Can any college perform all of those functions with excellence or even adequately in today' s climate of scarce resources and heavy competition for students?" After predicting growing fiscal pressures on the colleges, Breneman and Nelson (1980) made a similar argument, stating that the "most fundamental choice facing community colleges is whether to emphasize the community-based learning center concept, with an emphasis on adult and continuing education and community services, or to emphasize transfer programs, sacrificing elsewhere if necessary.... It may no longer be possible to have it both ways" (p. 114~. This perspective probably owes something to the argument that businesses must focus on their core competencies, and indeed, the successful for-profit institutions of higher education have tended to pursue a much more focused strategy. For example, the University of Phoenix concentrates on educating adult working THOMAS BAILEY 69

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students and does not try to serve the 18-year-old "traditional" college population. The DeVry Institutes specialize in a small number of technical degrees and simply do not expect to enroll students inter- ested in majoring in the humanities, the social sciences, or many of the sciences. Despite these calls for more focus, community colleges and indeed whole state systems have continued to move towards comprehensive models. Even states such as Wisconsin, which has maintained a tech- nical college system with a primary mission of providing occupational education, have developed programs to facilitate the eventual transfer of their students to four-year programs. Few new colleges are being built, but one recent example clearly shows the appeal of the compre- hensive model. The college planners used several approaches to survey the needs of the community and found an interest in a wide variety of transfer and occupational courses. The college then planned to try to respond to almost all of these interests. Why have community colleges rejected a more focused approach in favor of a comprehensive strategy? Why has their response to financial pressures been to seek new markets and sources of revenue rather than to concentrate primarily on their core functions? First, political factors, on the one hand, make presidents very reluctant to shed programs and, on the other, create incentives to take on new ones. New programs have the potential to create new constituencies that in turn generate state- and local-level political support at the needed level to maintain the flow of tax revenues. Thus, even if a new program outside of the college's traditional activities loses money in an immediate sense, it may create a political environment that leads to additional reimbursements from the state, county, or local government for its core activities.4 Second, sometimes new programs are believed to generate sur- pluses. If the institution has any excess capacity (which many did have in the l990s after a period of stable or falling enrollments), then the programs can be mounted at a low marginal cost. Even small surpluses from programs can provide presidents with discretionary funds when most of the revenues from the core credit programs are tied up in faculty salaries and other fixed costs. As state funding becomes more uncertain, these alternative sources of revenue appear more attractive. This development can be seen in the dramatic growth of the share of college budgets accounted for by state and federal grants. Moreover, it is not surprising that in search of new revenues, institutions will seek new markets rather than try to increase their market share in their old activities. For example, attracting more transfer students with bachelor's degree aspirations would require the 4For example, one of the reasons that a community college I visited in 2001 had introduced a dual enrollment program with local high schools was to build political support among taxpayers for additional local revenues. 70 COMMUNITY COLLEGES IN THE 21ST CENTURY

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college to convince students who previously did not enroll despite the presence of the transfer program. This might seem particularly difficult, especially as four-year colleges are trying to attract the same students. Exploiting unserved markets seems to be easier than increasing market share in mature markets. Third, college administrators are not convinced that additional missions will weaken current activities. Even if they were convinced. they would not know which activities on their own could provide a strong financial and political foundation. One of the fundamental tenets of the view that the community colleges are failed transfer institutions is that all of the new activities, particularly the growing importance of occupational education, have weakened the traditional transfer functions. Most community college administrators reject this notion. Moreover, most colleges do not keep data or records in such a way that they could evaluate the extent of cross-subsidies or the negative (or positive) effects that one program or function has on others. While it is easy to count new revenues as students enroll in new programs, it is much more difficult to measure the costs, especially the strain on infrastructure and the attention of administrators, of those new programs. Furthermore, despite the logic of the argument that one institution cannot do many things well, there is no definitive empirical evidence for this negative effect. Fourth, some community college experts have argued that a wide variety of program offerings under one roof is exactly what community college students need. According to this view, these students often have ambiguous or unrealistic education goals. If properly guided, these students can take advantage of the varied offerings as their interests change and as they converge on goals that better match their interests and skills. In these conceptualizations, it is argued that community colleges should further develop their comprehensive missions so that students have whatever support they need in order to move into gainful employment, regardless of whether that support involves general education, skills training, or student support services (Baker, 1999; Gleazer, 1980; Vaughan, 1985~. Thus, it is not surprising that colleges have continued to move towards a more comprehensive strategy. Shedding programs risks losing visible enrollments and political support in favor of an abstract goal of focused organizational efficiency, which, though logical, lacks definitive empirical measurement and evidence. OUTLOOK AND RECOMMENDATIONS Community colleges have many strengths: demographic and tech- nological development, the growing importance of nontraditional pathways through college, commitment to access and open admissions, and a continued supply of students whose weak high school preparation creates a need for community college remedial services. The for- profit competitors that have attracted so much attention have only THOMAS BAILEY 71

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succeeded in garnering a market share in the two-year sector in the low single digits. Moreover, according to the latest available data, at least through the middle years of the l990s, that market share did not grow (Bailey, Badway, and Gumport, in press). Although the for- profits may offer formidable competition to community colleges for some types of students, it is unlikely that they will threaten a signifi- cant part of the community college market in the foreseeable future.5 Moreover, public and private/nonprofit four-year institutions may represent a more significant threat to community colleges than for-profit institutions. But as long as the gap between community college tuition and the tuition charged by other postsecondary institutions remains as large as it is, community colleges will have a strong buffer against competition. And that gap continues to grow. Nevertheless, while the colleges will continue to attract enroll- ments, complacency is hardly in order. State and local legislators will continue to put financial pressure on the colleges both through general fiscal restraints and possibly demands for greater accountability for outcomes. But the community college response to these pressures has been to seek new markets and revenues rather than to concentrate primarily on a smaller number of core functions. As we have seen, the strongest incentives push the colleges toward a more comprehen- sive strategy. The danger with this strategy is that while it may generate enthusiasm and revenues about new activities, it may do so without necessarily improving the quality of the core degree-granting transfer and occupational programs. Given that community colleges will continue to pursue a compre- hensive strategy, what can administrators and state policy makers do to guarantee that colleges will be effective within the framework of comprehensiveness? The first and perhaps most obvious approach is to pay particular attention to the core functions of teaching and student services, especially student advising. Excitement about new alliances with local businesses or burgeoning noncredit classes to prepare students for industry certification exams should not detract from efforts to introduce the institutional features needed to improve teaching in the colleges or to increase and upgrade student advising services. Second, colleges need to search for and exploit the complementarities between their different functions. Too often, the potential for coop- eration and coordination is rarely realized. Such cooperation has long- run financial and substantive benefits, yet it also requires a significant commitment on the part of the institutional leadership and some investment of resources in the short run. Finally, colleges need to be able to analyze the effectiveness of their different programs and need to have better measures of the benefits and especially the costs of those programs. As it is now, administrators 50n the other hand, community colleges may have a good deal to learn from the higher quality for-profit institutions, especially in the area of student services. For a more detailed discussion of this, see Bailey, sadway, and Gumport <2001~. 72 COMMUNITY COLLEGES IN THE 21ST CENTURY

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in most colleges are not able to determine which programs generate surpluses and which require cross-subsidization. This vagueness about costs tends to encourage an increase in the number of programs and activities since the revenues generated by the new enrollments are easier to count than the direct and, especially, the indirect costs associated with those programs. This is not to say that colleges would never want to continue, or even to expand, programs that require cross- subsidization. Nevertheless, whatever the objectives, better information will help them achieve those objectives. In the end, there may be many sound economic and social reasons for the multifunction college, but those reasons have yet to be measured systematically. Community colleges make up a large and fundamentally impor- tant sector in higher education. While they face some significant challenges, they continue to have significant potential for the next several years. Strong incentives have encouraged them to take on an increasing number of missions and functions. As a result, they have evolved into extremely complex institutions, carrying out a large variety of activities that serve a diverse set of constituencies. Colleges need to continue to focus on improving the services that they already provide and to do a better job of finding and exploiting complementarities among missions so that they can realize the potential benefits that coordinated activities can bring. REFERENCES -r - - ---I Adelman, C. (1999~. Answers in the tool box: Academic intensity, attendance patterns, and bachelor's degree attainment. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Education. American Association of Community Colleges. (2001~. State-by-state profile of com- munity colleges, 2000. Washington, DC: Community College Press. Bailey, T.R., and Averianova, I.E. (1998~. Multiple missions of community colleges: Conflicting complementary. New York: Columbia University,Teachers College, Community College Research Center. Bailey, T.R., Badway, N., and Gumport, P. (in press). For-profit higher education Stanford University, National and community colleges. Palo Alto, CA: Center for Post Secondary Improvement. Bailey, T.R., and Weininger, E. (2001~. Performance, graduation, and transfer of immigrants and natives in CUNY community colleges. New York: Colum- bia University, Teachers College, Community College Research Center. Baker, G. (1999, February/March).Building the comprehensive community college. Community College Journal, 3-19. Blocker, C.E., Plummer, W., and Richardson, R.C., Jr. (1965~. The two-year college: A social synthesis. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall. Breneman, D.W., and Nelson, S.C. (1980~. The community college mission and patterns of funding. In D.W. Breneman and S.C. Nelson (Eds.), New direc- tions for community colleges (pp. 73-81~. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass. Brint, S., and Karabel, J. (1989~. The diverted dream: Community colleges and the promise of educational opportunity in America, 1900-1985. New York: Oxford University Press. Carnevale, A.P., and Desrochers, D.M. (2001~. Help wanted... credentials required. Princeton, NJ: Educational Testing Service. THOMAS BAILEY 73

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Clark, B. ~ 1961). The "cooling out" function in higher education. In H.A. Halsey et al. (Lds.), Education, economy, and society (pp. 513-521~. New York: Free Press. Cohen, A.M., and Brawer, F.B. (1996~. The American community college (3rd ebb. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass. Clowes, D.A., and Levine, B.H. (1989~. Community, technical, and junior colleges: Are they leaving higher education? Journal of Higher Education, 60, 349-356. College Board. (2001~. Trendsin college pricing2001. Washington,DC: Author. Cross, K.P. (1985~. Determining missions and priorities for the fifth generation. In W. Degan and D. Tillery (Eds.), Renewing the American community college: Priorities and strategies for effective leadership (pp. 34-52~. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass. Cross, K.P. (1993~. Improving the quality of instruction. In A. Levin (Ed.), Higher learning in America (pp. 287-308~. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press. Dougherty, K.J. (1994~. The contradictory college: The conflicting origins, impacts, and futures of the community college. Albany, NY: State University of New York Press. Dougherty, K.J., and Bakia, M.F. (1999~. The new economic development role of community colleges. New York: Columbia University, Teachers College, Community College Research Center. Eaton, J.S. (ode. (1994~. Colleges of choice: The enabling impact of the community college. New York: American Council on Education. Gerald, D.E., and Hussar, W.J. (2000~. Projections of education statistics to 2010. Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office. Gleazer, E.J. (1980~. The community college: Values, vision, vitality. Washington, DC: American Association of Community and Junior Colleges. Grubb, W.N. (1996~. Working in the middle. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass. Grubb, W.N. (1999a). Honored but invisible: An inside look at teaching in community colleges. New York: Routledge. Grubb, W.N. (1999b). Learning and earning in the middle: The economic benefits of sub-baccalaureate education. New York: Columbia University, Teachers College, Community College Research Center. Hebel, S. (1999~. Community College of Denver wins fans with ability to tackle tough issues. Chronicle of Higher Education, May 7, 45. Kane, T.J., and Rouse, C.E. (1995~. Labor-market returns to two- and four-year college. American Economic Review, 85, 600-614. Katsinas, S.G. (1994~. Is the open door closing? The democratizing role of the community college in the post-Cold War era. Community College Journal, 64~5), 24-28. Leitzel, T.C., and Clowes, D.A. (1991~. The diverted dream revisited. Community Services Catalyst, 24(1), 21 -25. Merisotis, J.P., and Wolanin, T.R. (2000~. Community college financing: Strategies and challenges. Washington, DC: Community College Press. National Association of State Budget Officers. (2000~. State expenditure report. Washington, DC: Author. National Center for Education Statistics. (1999a). Distance education at postsecondary education institutions, 1997-98 (NCES 2000-013~. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Education. National Center for Education Statistics. (1999b). Participation in adult education in the United States, 1998-99. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Education. National Center for Education Statistics. (2000a). Beginning Postsecondary Students Longitudinal Study, 1989-94 (BPS: 1989-94) datable. National Center for Education Statistics. (2000b). High school & beyond longitudinal study of 1980 postsecondary education transcript study (HS&B:So PETS) datable. National Center for Education Statistics. (2000c). Integrated Postsecondary Educa- tion Data System (IPEDS), "Completions" survey datable. 74 COMMUNITY COLLEGES IN THE 21ST CENTURY

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National Center for Education Statistics. (2000d). Integrated Postsecondary Educa- tion Data System (IPEDS), "Fall Enrollment" survey datable. National Center for Education Statistics. (2000e). Projections of educational statis- tics, Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Education. National Center for Education Statistics. (2000f). The condition of education 2000. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Education. Nora, A. (2000~. Reexamining the community college mission. Washington, DC: Community College Press. Perin, D. (1998~. Curriculum and pedagogy to integrate occupational and academic instruction in the community college: Implications for faculty development. New York: Columbia University, Teachers College, Community College Research Center. Roueche, J.E., and Roueche, S.D. (2001~. In pursuit of excellence: The Community College of Denver. Washington, DC: Community College Press. Schneider, B., and Stevenson, D. (1999~. The ambitious generation: America's teen- agers motivated but directionless. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press. Smith-Morest, V. (2001~. Integrating multiple missions of today's community colleges. Paper presented at the American Education Research Association meeting, Seattle, WA, April. Vaughan, G.B. (1985~. Maintaining open access and comprehensiveness. In D.E. Puyear and G.B. Vaughan (Eds.), Maintaining institutional integrity (pp. 17-28~. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass. Wechsler, H. (1968~. The transfer challenge: Removing barriers, maintaining com- mitment. Washington, DC: Association of American Colleges. THOMAS BAILEY 75

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