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When a Community College Transforms a City

When David Harrison became president of Columbus State Community College (CSCC) in 2010, the central-Ohio region, though economically healthier than the rest of the state, was still reeling from the effects of the Great Recession. Leveraging the capacities of the large institution he heads, Harrison began assembling a New-Deal-like potage of programs aimed at preparing people for the workforce, closing the skills gap, providing pathways to a debt-free education, and increasing the number of students earning a postsecondary degree or credential.

The recession is over now, even if its effects linger. And the economy in the Columbus region is growing faster now than any other part of Ohio. But the needs CSCC is addressing persist.