Rural Community College Peer Learning Network: Sharing USDOL Grant Experiences

Strengthening Rural Community Colleges

May 3, 2022

Through funding made possible by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and in partnership with the Rural Community College Alliance (RCCA), the Association of Community College Trustees (ACCT) is working to strengthen rural community colleges. Our project builds on ACCT’s prior work through the Strengthening Rural Community Colleges report that engaged rural community college presidents and trustees to gather information about the challenges faced by these institutions. One of the findings of this work was that rural colleges did not feel that they had a way to connect with one another to share ideas and discuss issues. They also expressed concern over the many barriers to accessing federal grant funding.

One of the components of our project is the creation of a Rural Community College Peer Learning Network, which serves as a way for rural community college leaders to share best practices, institutional experiences, and processes. The Rural Community College Peer Learning Network serves in conjunction with our monthly webinars and an opportunity to learn directly from other rural community colleges. Also, this is an opportunity for rural community colleges to learn how similar institutions operate while providing supportive resources to potentially utilize.

During this Rural Community College Peer Learning Network discussion we brought together rural community college leaders to learn about the process of applying for U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration grants and potential tips from current/previous grant recipients. This Peer Learning Network discussion followed our Wednesday, April 20, 2022, Applying for U.S. Department of Labor Grants webinar.

Rural Community College Peer Learning Network Meeting Details

Date: Tuesday, May 3, 2022
Time: 3:00 - 4:00 p.m. ET
Access the article about this Peer Learning Network discussion Strengthening Rural Community Colleges Peer Learning Network: Sharing USDOL Grant Experiences here.

Speaker Information

Sam Sam RenfroeRenfroe
Executive Director of Grant Development
Northwest Florida State College

Sam is Executive Director of Grant Development at Northwest Florida State College where he has served since 2018. He previously served as Director of Grant Development and Government Relations at North Central State College in Ohio. He earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Mass Media Communications from the University of Akron and a Master of Public Administration degree from Franklin University. Sam holds the Grant Professional Certification and is responsible for leading College applications for federal, state, and foundation grants. Since moving to Florida, Sam completed the President’s Leadership Academy at Northwest Florida State College and Leadership Okaloosa. In 2020, he participated in the CASE Federal Funding Task Force. In 2021, he was appointed to the Florida Council of Resource Development Board of Directors.

MeghanMeghan Reece Brown Reece Brown, J.D.
Executive Director, Strategic Initiatives
Central Carolina Community College

Meghan Reece Brown is a community college advocate, collaboration lover, and spreadsheet fanatic.  She earned her Bachelor's Degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in Interpersonal and Organizational Communication and her Juris Doctorate from Campbell University's School of Law.  After practicing in the courtroom, Brown made a jump into higher education and hasn't turned back.  For the last eight (8) years, she has served as the Executive Director of Strategic Initiatives at Central Carolina Community College in central North Carolina where she oversees externally funded programs and special projects.  In this role she leads the full-scope of proposal development, project management, compliance, budget management, and strategic planning.

DanielleDanielle Keys Keys
Director, YouthBuild Bogalusa
Northshore Technical Community College

Danielle  Keys is currently the Executive Director of YouthBuild Bogalusa, a program of Northshore Technical Community College where she has served for the last 13years. Through private practice, Mrs. Keys manages Serenity Client Services, LLC, where she provides substance abuse treatment and education as a Licensed Addictions Counselor and Prevention Professional. In addition, Mrs. Keys holds office as a council person with the City of Bogalusa

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