Momentum Keeps Building for Community Colleges to Confer Baccalaureate Degrees

Graduation Scroll and Book Stack

A decade ago, 14 states allowed their community colleges to confer baccalaureate degrees, a bold, sometimes controversial departure from the colleges’ tradition of conferring two-year associate degrees and skills-based certificates. Over the ensuing 10 years, despite opponents’ concerns about “mission creep” and invading the turf of four-year colleges and universities, the higher-education world did not stop spinning. Instead, the number of states on board has increased to 22, with California most recently joining the ranks last September, after Gov. Jerry Brown signed a bill approving a pilot program involving up to 15 community colleges.

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