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The Carnegie Corporation of New York named Dr. DeRionne Pollard as a recipient of its Academic Leadership Award, Dr. Pollard is only the second community college recipient of this award. The honor consists of $500,000 in support for each winner’s academic initiatives.

Dr. Pollard has earmarked the Carnegie award funds to two landmark programs: the coaching program at the College, Achieving Collegiate Excellence and Success (ACES), and the Montgomery College Foundation’s Innovation Fund.

Since taking over as president of Montgomery College, Dr. Pollard has encouraged the construction of an ambitious strategic plan, which includes a focus on student retention and completion.

“I am deeply honored to have been selected for this extraordinary award from the Carnegie Corporation,” Dr. Pollard said. “Their tradition of investing in higher education is one that benefits not just current students, but wider communities, and our democracy as a whole.”

ACES was created as a partnership with Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS) and the Universities at Shady Grove (USG). The program, highlighted by the coaches’ mentoring and guidance of each student, provides academic and personal support to a diverse body of low income, first generation college students. Currently, over 120 ACES students are enrolled at four-year colleges including 60 attending USG. This semester, 977 are enrolled at Montgomery College and more than 1,500 ACES students attend 13 MCPS high schools, preparing to go to college.

“I believe that these investments will create more equitable educational outcomes for our diverse students, while strengthening our faculty’s capacities for impactful pedagogy,” Dr. Pollard said.

Created by Dr. Pollard and made possible through the generosity of the Webber Family Foundation, the Morris and Gwendolyn Cafritz Foundation, and private donations, the Montgomery College Foundation’s Innovation Fund provides funding for cutting-edge projects at the College that will have sustainable impact on helping students succeed in meeting their educational goals.

Adult Learning at Montgomery College Deemed Top 10 in the Nation
In an article titled “America’s Best Colleges for Adult Learners,Washington Monthly Magazine ranked Montgomery College the ninth-best two-year college in the country for adult learners. See the complete ranking and list criteria. On the heels of Washington’s Monthly’s ranking, Washington Post reporter Nick Anderson interviewed George Payne, vice president of Workforce Development & Continuing Education at MC, to discuss the ranking and how it brought attention to a “long overshadowed sector of higher education.” Read the Post story, titled “Here are Some Top 20 Schools: Virginia Tech and Montgomery College.” Finally, the outstanding media coverage regarding the College’s Top 10 ranking for adult learner education culminated with an online piece in Forbes Magazine titled “The Best College for Adults.

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