College increasingly important
LBW Community College faculty and staff are preparing for Fall Semester with registration starting July 13, 2012.
“LBWCC offers a great value for educational dollars,” said LBWCC President Dr. Herb Riedel. “Whether seeking a two-year degree in academic transfer programs or technical training for future or current jobs, we offer students an excellent educational experience at much less cost than four-year institutions and our highly credentialed instructors believe in student success.”
College is becoming increasingly important, according to a 2010 report by Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce. The report, titled “Help Wanted: Projecting Jobs and Education Requirements Through 2018,” states some level of education beyond high school is what most employers will need within the next six years.
“According to this report, the number of jobs requiring at least a two-year associate’s degree will outpace the number of people qualified to fill them by at least three million by 2018,” said Renée LeMaire, LBWCC public information officer and director of marketing and development.
“It clearly makes the point that some education after high school is increasingly required for entry into a significant number of jobs.”
The report forecasts that 63 percent of all jobs will require at least some postsecondary education. Employers will need 22 million new workers with postsecondary degrees, and the report shows that number will fall short by three million workers without a dramatic change in course.
“America needs more workers with college degrees, certificates and industry certifications,” said Anthony P. Carnevale, the Center’s director. “If we don’t address this now, millions of jobs could go offshore.”
He further states, “High school graduates and dropouts will find themselves largely left behind in the coming decade as employer demand for workers with postsecondary degrees continues to surge.”
The report further highlights a trend in recent years in reports to the Bureau of Labor Statistics that sometimes a certificate in a particular trade, a two-year associate’s degree or just a few years of college may be as valuable, if not more so, to one’s career and income as a traditional four-year bachelor’s degree.
“For those pursuing a four-year degree, LBWCC offers a great value for their first two years,” said LeMaire. “Whatever their major, students can get their first two-years of basic courses for less than half the cost compared to most four-year institutions.”
For 12 credit hours during one semester at LBWCC, fees and tuition for the 2012-2013 academic year total $1,584, compared to current rates at Troy University’s $3,372; up to $3,546 at University of South Alabama; Alabama State University’s $4,041; University of Alabama’s $4,665; and Auburn University at $4,723.
“These university rates may actually change since some have increases pending,” said LeMaire.
In addition to university transfer programs, LBWCC offers several technical programs, many of them in high-demand, high-paying fields, she said.
Because the demand is so high for technical training, it is making an impact on some who already hold a bachelor’s degree, according to Jan Riley, LBWCC’s director of admissions and records.
“We are seeing a lot more situations where people who already have a four-year degree are coming back to train in a technical program,” she said.
LBWCC’s career technical programs that can be completed in five semesters include Computer Science, Drafting and Design, Emergency Medical Services, Forest Technology, Industrial Electronics, and Office Administration – Medical Office Option.
In only four semesters at LBWCC, students can complete programs in Air Conditioning and Refrigeration, Automotive Mechanics, Child Development, Diagnostic Medical Sonography (ultrasound), Diesel and Heavy Equipment Mechanics, EMT-Paramedic, Paramedic to Associate Degree Nursing, Practical Nursing (LPN), and Welding.
Other technical programs at LBWCC that can be completed in one, two or three semesters include CAD Operator (drafting), Child Development, Consumable Arc Welding Processes, Cosmetology, EMT-Basic, Esthetics Technology, Forest Worker/Aide, Microcomputer Application Specialist, Nail Technology, Registered Nursing Mobility Program, Surgical Technology, and Therapeutic Massage Technology.
“Pending approval by the accrediting organization for colleges in the region, we hope to also offer a new Culinary Arts short-certificate program next term,” said LeMaire.
For individuals without a high school diploma, LBWCC offers free adult education and GED preparation classes in Andalusia, Opp, Florala, Greenville and Luverne. A new provision of federal Pell Grant funds requires at least a GED for students to receive student financial aid, said LeMaire.
For more information about LBWCC, visit the website at
or call (334) 222-6591.