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USDA and Nebraska Colleges Work to Improve Access to Higher Education and Deliver Jobs

Front row: Mary Honke, Vice President for Institutional Advancement and Dr. Greg Smith, President of Central Community College. Back row from left to right are:  Dr. Jack Huck, President of Southeast Community College; Ryan Purdy, Interim President of Mid-Plains Community College; Dr. Todd Holcomb, President of Western Community College; State Director Maxine Moul; and Dennis Baack, Executive Director of the Nebraska Community College Association.

Front row: Mary Honke, Vice President for Institutional Advancement and Dr. Greg Smith, President of Central Community College. Back row from left to right are: Dr. Jack Huck, President of Southeast Community College; Ryan Purdy, Interim President of Mid-Plains Community College; Dr. Todd Holcomb, President of Western Community College; State Director Maxine Moul; and Dennis Baack, Executive Director of the Nebraska Community College Association.

Local colleges and USDA Rural Development are combining resources to improve the availability of higher education in rural areas. This increased emphasis on continuing education will bring a stronger work force to Nebraska.

In honor of the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the American Association of Community Colleges April 4, USDA Rural Development State Director Maxine Moul met with the Nebraska’s Community College Presidents.  Dr. Michael Chipps, president of Northeast Community College in Norfolk, attended the MOU signing in Washington, D.C.  Director Moul and community programs state technician Lory Cappel presented information on various Rural Development funding for which the colleges are eligible, including the Rural Community Development Initiative (RCDI) and Jobs Accelerator funding jointly available through USDA RD and the Economic Development Administration.

Rural Development officials discussed examples of previously funded projects through the Rural Business Enterprise Grants and RCDI and the benefits they provided colleges in Nebraska.  The community colleges have been excellent partners with USDA Rural Development and have hosted the rural jobs forum for RD at their colleges, through the statewide video system.

To learn more about this effort, click here.

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