Alamance Community College (ACC) has named Elon University as its 2020 Business Partner of the Year in recognition of the outstanding support the university has consistently provided to ACC students and graduates.
As significant partners, ACC and Elon University have worked together to increase educational opportunities for their students and advance the professional development of their graduates. These collaborations and joint efforts have benefitted the broader Alamance County community and economy.
Key elements that led to Elon’s selection as ACC’s Business Partner of the Year award were:
- Under an agreement signed in 2016, Elon University has guaranteed that qualified ACC students can seamlessly transfer up to 65 credits to achieve full status as juniors at Elon. The partnership provides local students with a strong incentive to advance their educational careers at ACC and continue their pursuit of a bachelor’s degree at Elon. High school students who earn associate degrees at ACC through its Career and College Promise program can more easily transfer to Elon to finish their bachelor’s degrees in two years.
- The Elon Transfer Scholarship, now in its fifth year, grants $22,500 annually for up to three years to a selected ACC graduate toward the cost of tuition, fees, room and board. The scholarship benefits ACC students with documented financial need who would otherwise be unable to attend Elon University.
- ACC and Elon University are working together to develop a specialized 2-plus-2 teacher transfer agreement that would benefit local high school students.
- Elon University’s Doctor of Physical Therapy program in its School of Health Sciences provides ACC first-year nursing students with a daylong immersive physical therapy boot camp each fall.
- The ACC apprenticeship coordinator is working with the director of utilities and the director of building trades at Elon to establish up to five apprenticeship programs.
- Many local high school students participating in Elon Academy attend ACC as Career and College Promise students, earning free college credit in ACC classes. A program within the university’s Center for Access and Success, Elon Academy prepares students with a financial need and/or no family history of college to pursue a degree through summer residential programming and mentoring throughout the school year.
- Elon University contributes 20 to 30 student learning interns per semester through the Kernodle Center for Civic Engagement to ACC’s Academic and Career Readiness (adult literacy) students. The Elon students tutor and teach, engage in events and special projects, and assist with social media and recruiting projects. Elon also provides funding for a part-time intern coordinator to manage the interns.
- The Elon Buddies program pairs 20 to 30 university volunteers with ACC Career College students who have intellectual or developmental and physical disabilities. The program, now in its eighth year, focuses on career development and socialization in group and individual activities on the Elon campus twice a month. Elon Buddies was honored with the Governor’s Medallion Award for Volunteer Service in 2019.
- Elon University consults with ACC’s Academic and Career Readiness staff to improve instructional delivery in the English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) program. Elon also recruits student volunteers for this program.
- Elon University and the Oak Foundation, under the leadership of Dr. Jean Rattigan Rohr, and the Village Project provided ACC with grant funds and support totaling $75,000 over five years for the provision of childcare during ACC’s ESOL classes at local churches.
- Elon University’s Randy Williams, Vice President and Associate Provost for Inclusive Excellence and Associate Professor of Education, is a member of ACC’s advisory committee for Minority Males in Medicine.
- ACC partners with Elon University through membership in the North Carolina Campus Compact, a collaborative network of colleges and universities. ACC President Dr. Algie Gatewood serves on its board.
- Elon’s anatomical gift program recently signed on with the ACC Histotechnology program to provide small amounts of human tissue for student instruction.
- At least six ACC graduates work for Elon’s nationally recognized landscape crew.
The ACC Foundation facilitates the nomination process for this annual award. The criteria for the award is as follows: Number and quality of volunteers provided to ACC by the business or organization; opportunities provided by the business or organization for current ACC students; number of ACC graduates hired by the business or organization annually; resources provided to Alamance Community College by the business or organization annually.