Community Colleges Expand Commitment To Building A Clean Economy With Funding From The Kresge Foundation

Nov 05, 2013, 10:00 ET from American Association of Community Colleges

AACC Receives $1.1 Million Grant to Enhance Clean Technology Training and Community Resiliency Planning

WASHINGTON, Nov. 5, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- A new $1.1-million grant awarded to the Sustainability Education and Economic Development (SEED) Center at the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC) by The Kresge Foundation will expand clean tech training and sustainability education innovations at community colleges nationwide.

The SEED Center, now with 472 member colleges across the country, provides a platform for colleges to share promising practices from green career pathways, to technical program design, to creating campus-based living laboratories. While SEED's focus will continue to be on building the sustainability-related skills and marketable credentials of students, it will expand to highlight the two-year college role in building resilient communities that can recover from extreme weather, energy and economic challenges.  

A host of specific innovative SEED activities will be expanded under the grant, including workshops, peer-to-peer college mentoring and SEED's national Genome awards program. The new grant builds on an earlier grant from Kresge that established the role of community colleges in building a successful long-term clean economy initiative. In just over two years, the SEED Center has provided professional development to more than 4,000 college faculty, staff and administrators. 

"The clean economy is an unprecedented opportunity to grow America's prosperity and create jobs," said Walter G. Bumphus, president of AACC. "The grant from Kresge supports our growing commitment to educating and training workers for successful careers in energy, transportation, resource conservation and lean manufacturing. It also will position more community colleges to play leadership roles in moving their own communities to be models of resiliency."

"We are delighted to support AACC's important work in the green jobs field," said Kresge's Education Program Director, William Moses. Added Lois DeBacker, Kresge's senior program director for the environment, "By supporting community colleges—and the communities they serve—AACC's SEED Center  straddles Kresge's twin commitments  to promoting postsecondary student success and building community resilience in the face of climate change and other challenges."

With direct access to the nation's 1,200 community colleges and network of faculty and experts, AACC is a tactical hub for the national clean economy and sustainability movement. Launched in October 2010 by AACC and ecoAmerica, the SEED Center includes more than 400 curated resources and practices. More information about SEED is available at

About the American Association of Community Colleges
Headquartered in Washington, D.C., the American Association of Community Colleges is the leading advocacy organization representing more than to 1,100 community, junior and technical colleges nationwide. Community colleges are the largest and fastest growing sector of higher education, enrolling 13.4 million credit and non-credit students each year.

About The Kresge Foundation
The Kresge Foundation is a $3.1 billion, private, national foundation that seeks to expand opportunities in America's cities through its support of nonprofit organizations in six fields: health, the environment, arts and culture, education, human services, and community development. For more information, go to

SOURCE American Association of Community Colleges