Distance Learning Grant Will Bring the Classroom to the Havasupai People
In the Bottom of the Grand Canyon
Flagstaff, AZ, March 4, 2011 – State Director for Arizona, Alan Stephens, US Department of Agriculture (USDA) – Rural Utilities Service, National Administrator for USDA Rural Service (RUS) and Jonathan Adelstein visited Flagstaff to celebrate the $305,000 grant awarded to the College. At the presentation Adelstein said, “All of you here today know how many rural communities lack the digital opportunities they need. If we want this country to succeed in the 21st century, we need to harness the potential of every young person in the country. It’s an economic imperative that we have a highly educated, highly trained workforce and it all begins in the schools including our community colleges.”
The grant, which is part of the US Department of Agriculture Rural Utility Service Distance Learning and Telemedicine (DLT) Grant Program, will allow the College to replace its outdated ITV equipment with high-definition videoconferencing learning technology. The new equipment will help the College expand educational opportunities to rural communities throughout Coconino County. For example, the College will now be able to provide more connections to new ITV delivery sites in Supai and Fredonia.
ITV Technology, or Instructional Television, allows students at a distance learning location to take college courses that are taught from an origination site such as the College’s Lone Tree or Fourth Street campuses here, in Flagstaff. ITV is often the only alternative distance learners have to higher education if they cannot access college coursework in-person or online.
Coconino County students in Fredonia, Page, Tuba City, Havasupai, Grand Canyon and Williams challenged by higher education opportunities in Flagstaff because of time, distance, transportation or weather, will be able to benefit from greatly-improved state-of-the-art ITV technology and equipment delivered to learning centers nearby their homes.
The new technology and equipment provided with grant funds from USDA Rural Utilities Services will enable Coconino County’s rural students to complete their Arizona General Education Curriculum pre-requisites in both the arts and lab sciences without having to relocate. While Northern Arizona University has discontinued its ITV instructional programs, CCC delivers a wide variety of ITV courses. These include Accounting, Administration of Justice, Anthropology, Biology, Business, Early Childhood Education, Education, English, Geography, Hotel and Restaurant Management, Humanities, Math, Nutrition, Philosophy, Psychology, Religious Studies, Sociology—and—room to grow. Because the new equipment delivers a very high resolution image, ITV courses not previously possible such as American Sign Language will now be available.
The breadth and scope of general education coursework available through the College’s ITV Program is expected to provide distant learners several other benefits. In addition to being able to complete general education requirements in the Arts and Sciences with ITV, remote students may qualify for CCC2NAU, an innovative college access program providing a smooth, seamless transfer from the community college to university.
The newly improved distance learning equipment and technology will also be able to provide remote county students with academic support through the College’s Learning Enhancement Center and Student Support Services.
However, Distance Learners are not just limited to the “typical” college student. The new ITV equipment and technology will also be of benefit to the College’s “non-traditional” students engaged in corporate training, professional development and entrepreneurial education. If, for example, a business, an employee, nurse, volunteer firefighter, or Home Healthcare Assistant would like to participate in training held at the College’s Flagstaff locations, they will be able to take advantage of learning opportunities by participating from a remote location such as the Grand Canyon National Park.
After the event at Coconino Community College, Adelstein and Stephens met with Havasupai tribal officials at Supai to announce a 2.2 million dollar broadband project that will bring access to this remote village at the bottom of the Grand Canyon. USDA Rural Development’s RUS has invested millions into broadband for rural Arizona over the last year.
Coconino Community College Coconino Community College (CCC) was established in Flagstaff, Arizona in 1991 and currently serves all of Coconino County, covering an immense 18,000 square mile area.
When CCC first opened its doors in 1991, nearly 1,000 students enrolled at the Flagstaff campus in the first semester. Almost 20 years later, the College has experienced an astounding growth rate and today serves nearly 10,000 citizens per year with three main campuses: the Flagstaff Lone Tree Campus; Flagstaff Fourth Street Campus and Page/Lake Powell Campus. The College also offers classes in Fredonia, Grand Canyon/Tusayan, Tuba City, and Williams.
CCC provides it’s learners with affordable tuition rates and over 60 certificates & degrees, including nursing, fire science, detention officer academy and early childhood education which directly impact the health and safety of Coconino County residents. Many classes transfer to four-year Universities. Classroom instruction is located on campus, online and through interactive TV (ITV).
For more information, contact Scott Talboom at (928) 226 – 4335 or Rick McDonald (928)
226 – 4278.