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  • Media Advisory
  • Date: February 4, 2005

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    Hundreds of Students from Maryland’s 16 Community Colleges to Converge on Annapolis for ‘Student Advocacy Day’
    Community College Students From Around the State Will Urge Legislators To Support Colleges’ Funding Needs and Other Legislative Priorities

    Tuesday, Feb. 8, 2005
    Miller Senate Office Building, Annapolis
    (Presidential Conference Room)

    Hundreds of students from Maryland’s 16 community colleges will head to the State Capital in Annapolis to meet with lawmakers and to urge them to back funding and other legislative initiatives that are vital to the continued success of the state’s two-year institutions. Students will urge legislators to support the Governor’s fiscal year 2006 budget request for community colleges, which calls for a 5.2 percent increase statewide in funding for the community colleges. They will also urge lawmakers to support the Governor’s proposed increase of need-based scholarship programs by approximately $15.8 million and to support increasing the Capital Budget for community colleges, to keep pace with growing enrollment and aging facilities.

    Students from each of the state’s community colleges will gather for the kickoff of the “Student Advocacy Day” event at 9:30 a.m. in the Presidential Conference Room of the Miller Senate Office Building. Along with student leaders, several key Maryland lawmakers – including Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller – will be among the speakers, along with an array of community college and higher education officials. After the gathering, students will visit their respective Delegates and Senators, from their local delegations.

    The students will seek to raise awareness of the important role played by Maryland community colleges in higher education, as evidenced by the follow facts:

    • Some 62 percent of Maryland’s high school graduates who go to college in the state begin their higher education at community colleges, and more than half of all of the state’s students in undergraduate programs at public institutions are enrolled in community colleges; and
    • Nearly 400,000 students attend Maryland’s community colleges annually, through both credit and non-credit programs.

    A 2003 study commissioned by the Maryland Association of Community Colleges analyzed the economic impact and financial benefits of a community college education.  Among the findings:

    • For each full-time year of community college studies, the average student earns approximately $4,500 more annually;
      Maryland’s community colleges pump roughly $5.6 billion into the state’s economy and Maryland taxpayers receive an 11.9% rate of return on the public investment in community colleges.

    # # #

    Media Contacts: 
    H. Clay Whitlow or Jody Kallis, Maryland Association of Community Colleges, 410-974-8117
    Randy Bengfort, Howard Community College, (w) 410-772-4811; (cell) 410-409-0533
    Steve Simon, Montgomery College, (w) 301-251-7952; (cell) 240-461-0333

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