On behalf of the trustees and the students, Montgomery College President Dr. DeRionne Pollard will go to Annapolis this legislative session as a leading voice to encourage state elected leaders to continue to invest in community colleges.
Key needs include operating funds to help keep tuition affordable and capital funds to provide spaces needed to drive student success. This year, the College will work with legislators to secure funding for a much needed Student Services Center on the Rockville Campus.
Working with Maryland’s other community college leaders, Dr. Pollard will also advocate for greater financial aid support for low-income students to expand student opportunity in workforce training programs. Unfortunately, there is no state financial aid and very little federal aid available to students who are pursuing licensure or certification programs in noncredit courses at their local community college.
These programs provide the training required to fill many of the middle-skill jobs that drive day-to-day commerce. For this reason, affordable training that provides skills in construction, truck driving, culinary arts, computer technology, apartment maintenance, and cyber technology is critical to maintaining a skilled Maryland workforce.
Additionally, Dr. Pollard along with the presidents of Howard and Prince George’s Community Colleges will speak to the Ways and Means Committee of the House of Delegate on the need for an affordable postsecondary education, provide an overview of President Obama’s proposal for free community college, and provide a description of the work of other states’ to implement such a model.
The Maryland legislature meets for 90 consecutive days and is scheduled to adjourn on Monday, April 11.