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Aspen Institute lists MCC in program of excellence

Nikki Waldmann
Mesa Legend

Nikki Waldmann Mesa LegendThe Aspen Institute has a college excellence program, with a $1 million prize awarded to community colleges every two years towards high achievement performances among different community colleges.  The Aspen Institute states on their site “Improving community college completion rates is a vital national priority.” Currently Arizona has nine different community colleges lined up to receive the huge prize of $1 million, with MCC being one of the nine colleges.  There are a total of 152 institutions running to win this grand prize. There are three rounds in order to win the grand prize.

In round one the program is paying attention to three different areas from the schools.
The first part is the student success in persistence, degrees awarded, completion, and transfers.  Part two is improvements in these areas over time. And the third would be the equitable outcomes for students of all racial/ethnic and socioeconomic backgrounds.  Round two the Aspen Institute invites the 150 eligible institutions to submit an application describing what they have done to improve student success on their campus. From that point in the running the institutes are narrowed down to only the top ten schools, but before the final ten are chosen Aspen conducts interviews with the leadership teams.

Once Aspen has selected their final 10 they then look for these four different areas such as “Completion Outcomes, Labor Market Outcomes, Learning Outcomes, and Equitable Outcomes.  During the final round Aspen then conducts a two-day visit to each of the 10 schools that have made it to the third round, where they will gather information about each school. During these two-day visits Aspen has interviews with leadership, staff, faculty, students and other about how the schools excellence was achieved. There are three main assets Aspen is paying close attention to which are, “Labor market outcomes, Learning outcomes assessment, and Four-year transfer and completion outcomes”.
After all the data is collected and processed a price jury then determines the number one winner and up to four finalists.

The jury then examines all aspects of each school but are specifically looking at four different areas.  First area is “completion outcomes” which are the percentage of students in academic/transfer programs, demographic make-up of the student body and percentage of how many students are attending.  The second area is “Labor market outcomes” meaning the county’s unemployment rate and they count five-year job growth rate. The third area is “learning outcomes” which is considered the percentage of students.  And the last area is “equitable outcomes” that is the percentage of minority and low-income students at the college.

Student Life and Hacks

Valentine's Day gift ideas

EVENTS On Campus

Sex Crimes and Cyber Criminals: The Myths and The Realities

Feb 2. 7 p.m.
Southern & Dobson
Performing Arts Center 

MCC Psi Beta Chapter presents Sex Crimes and Cyber Criminals: The Myths and The Realities. “Join Tim Franklin, Phillis Walker and Psi Beta for some interesting psychological insights into the world of sex crimes and cyber criminals; it’s not just stealing money”. -MCC Psi Beta.

Admission: Free

Rock the World Through Service

Feb 3. 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Southern & Dobson Campus
Kirk Student Center, Navajo Room 

Community Engagement Expo presents “Rock the World Though Service” Meet different agencies that are excited to recruit new volunteers.

Admission: Free

What is philosophy and why does it matter?

Feb 4. 3 to 4 p.m.
Southern & Dobson Campus

The first meeting of the Philosophy club.

Admission: Free

Tuesday talks

Feb 9. 2 p.m.
Southern & Dobson Campus
SC Building, Room 11E  

Ice cream social presentation/ discussion about “Weed War: Should Recreational Marijuana be Legalized”. Feauturing Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery and Medical marijuana depensary operator J.P. Holyoak.

Admission: Free

EVENTS Off Campus

Frank Sinatra Jr.

Feb 4. 7:30 to 9:30 p.m.
Mesa Arts Center
1 E Main St Mesa 

Frank Sinatra Jr. and the Phoenix Symphony will be preforming together in a celebration of the 100th birthday of the iconic Frank Sinatra Sr.

Ticket information visit:

Rock the World Through Service

Feb 6. 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Activity Complex South Mountain Park
10919 S Central Ave  

Dancing, live music, raffles, and hay rides a great event for the whole family and any Coyotes Hockey fans. “Rock Your Maple Leaf – Get a Little Loonie!” – Canadian Picnic.

Admission: Free

Lost Giant Of The Cretaceous

Feb 10. 7:30 to 9:30 p.m.
Mesa Arts Center
1 E Main St Mesa 

Some of the largest dinosaurs discovered to date. See the Spinosaurus larger than the T.Rex, amazing videos recreating the lost world. 

Ticket information visit:

2016 Golf Fest

Feb 12. 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Longbow Golf Club
5601 E Longbow Pkwy 

The Golf Fest is the one stop shop for all golfers. Introducing new products for great prices, free lessons by PGA pros and an amazing trick shot golf show. 

Admission: $10 for adults; children under 10 are free



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These are archived stories from Mesa Legend editions before Fall 2018. See article for corresponding author.

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