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Report Shows PCC's a Leader in Awarding Associate Degrees to African-Americans

Camille Arrington, Christopher Hardy Jr., and Angela Oden, left to right, earned associate degrees from PCC's Occupational Therapy Assistant program this month as the college continues to be a national leader in awarding associate degrees to African-Americans.

WINTERVILLE—Preliminary data from the U.S. Department of Education’s National Center for Education Statistics shows Pitt Community College is among the nation’s top institutions when it comes to awarding associate degrees to African-Americans.

In a report published in the May 10 issue of Diverse Issues in Higher Education magazine, Pitt ranked 97th in the number of associate degrees awarded to African-Americans during the 2010-11 academic year.

According to the report, PCC awarded 205 associate degrees from all disciplines to African-Americans (63 males and 142 females) in 2010-11. The total represented 26 percent of all graduates from the college that year as well as a 26 percent increase from the previous year, when Pitt awarded 163 associate degrees to African-American students in 2009-10.

Though Pitt’s overall ranking was lower than when the college checked in at 68th in the 2009 report, the number of associate degrees the college conferred to African-Americans in the 2012 rankings was actually higher (205 compared with 202).

"Student access and success are two major strategic goals of Pitt Community College, and this good news underscores our progress in promoting the completion of degrees and certificates of all of our students, especially first-generation college students,” said PCC President G. Dennis Massey. "We are a powerful engine for workforce preparation in Pitt County and eastern North Carolina."

Among North Carolina’s 58 community colleges, Pitt was fourth in the rankings, behind only Charlotte’s Central Piedmont Community College (52nd), Guilford Technical Community College (55th) and Fayetteville Technical Community College (66th).

According to the U.S. Department of Education, the analysis was restricted to accredited, Title IV-eligible institutions located in the 50 United States and Washington, D.C., which excluded institutions from U.S. territories and U.S. military service schools.

Arizona’s University of Phoenix-Online Campus led the rankings with 6,031 associate degrees awarded to African-American students in 2010-11.