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New Rankings Name Howard Community College as One of America’s Best for Adult Learners

adult learners award

Washington Monthly recently ranked Howard Community College as one of the nation’s best two-year colleges for adult learners. This marks the first year that the Washington, D.C.-based magazine has measured four- and two-year colleges by their service to adult students. Howard Community College came in at number four on the list, with high scores for ease of transfer, flexibility of programs, and services to students.

“I am honored that Washington Monthly recognized Howard Community College for its work to support adult students,” said Dr. Kate Hetherington, president of Howard Community College. “As a community college graduate, I know the transformational effect community colleges can have on students and their families. Howard Community College is committed to providing all students with pathways to success.”

To develop its rankings, Washington Monthly used data from the Department of Education’s Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) survey and the new College Scorecard database, as well as the College Board’s Annual Survey of Colleges. In addition to transfer, program flexibility, and services, the magazine looked at the percentage of students over age 25, loan repayment rate, earnings after attending college, and tuition and fees.

“Every year, millions of adult Americans make the decision to go back to college to earn the degrees they need to advance their lives,” wrote Paul Glastris, editor in chief of Washington Monthly. “We hope by honoring colleges that do right by adult students, we’ll spur more colleges to do the same.”

In the fall 2015 semester, Howard Community College served more than 3,600 credit students who were 25 years old or above, which amounted to 37 percent of the college’s total credit student population. The average age for credit students was 27 years old.

With a majority of students enrolled part time, Howard Community College offers a variety of course delivery options to students—online, hybrid, and in-person, as well as daytime, evening, and weekend. Adult students are also attracted to academic advising and financial aid services, tutoring support, military and veterans assistance, and credit for prior learning. For instance, two new pathway programs offer military medics and corpsmen, and Maryland licensed paramedics, with the opportunity to receive advanced standing in the nursing program.

In addition to diverse academic programs, Howard Community College provides students with assistance in all aspects of the employment process through the Counseling and Career Services Center. Both personal and career counseling services are available to students. Other opportunities include help with writing resumes, improving interview skills, finding internships, and securing new jobs.

In response to Washington Monthly’s rankings, The Washington Post published an article titled, “New rankings: Never mind the Ivies. Check out Howard Community College,” featuring an interview with Dr. Hetherington.

To learn more about the Washington Monthly’s college rankings, visit

Find more information on services and support for adult students at Howard Community College. It’s not too late to get started

Topics: Announcements
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