Although the BORN decision on RCC’s Nursing Program has a significant impact on our community, it is essential to note that RCC offers a broad portfolio of programs and services. Moreover, over the past five years, the College has made significant progress in improving the quality educational opportunities offered to our students.
Investment and excitement in the College has never been greater. In 2017, RCC completed a major capital improvement plan, made possible through $72.5 million in funding from DCAMM, DOER, private foundations, and partner organizations. RCC’s facilities now include a state-of-the-art health sciences building, new student commons, fully-renovated Media Arts Center, and upgraded STEM laboratories, to name a few.
RCC continues to serve as a leader in the field of green energy. In 2017, the College was recognized by the Baker-Polito Administration with a Leading by Example Award and last year Dr. Valerie Roberson received a 2018 Leventhal Award from A Better City, recognizing her leadership of and vision for a campus-wide renewable energy project. Additionally, since the completion of the energy project, energy costs have decreased by 60%. RCC is also launching its Smart Building Technology Center, home of a new program in Smart Building Technology that will offer students an engineering degree, this fall.
The College has also revived its visual and performing arts programs, offering 20 sections of acting, music, visual arts and dance. Additionally, RCC has eliminated all developmental math courses in favor of a co-requisite model, which not only improves completion rates but also offers students significant cost savings. The College also expanded its international exchange portfolio over the past year, with both faculty and students participating in study abroad opportunities this summer.
RCC’s faculty and staff are integrally involved in the state-wide Open Educational Resources (OER) Initiative; significantly lowering textbook costs for RCC students. We have increased dual enrollment with BPS students; and, we have meaningfully increased our outreach efforts to area high school students, most recently by offering a Summer STEM Prep program to 10th, 11th and 12th graders.
In addition to strong academic programming, the College continues to serve the community by providing non-credit workshops and learning experiences for youth. Over the past year, the College offered free seminars on Building Black Wealth and hosted various community forums, including a discussion on diversity on Boston’s exam schools. The College continued its tradition of exposing students to STEM at an early age through the Lego Robotics Program and the Kids Coding Club.
These are just a few of the ways in which Roxbury Community College has progressed and improved as an institution, under the leadership of Dr. Roberson.
None of this changes the fact that recent BORN decision on our Nursing Program is a setback that will take resources and thoughtful leadership to overcome. However, we are confident that we are equipped to overcome this hurdle while minimizing the impact on our students. The accomplishments of RCC clearly show that there are many positive developments and that the College is committed to equipping our students, and our community, with the skills and resources needed for success.