From the very first, community colleges, often called “the people’s colleges,” have stirred an egalitarian zeal among their members. . . . [But] The inspired sense of purpose that drove the growth of two-year colleges has somewhat eroded, and, in the hierarchy of American higher education, too many people look condescendingly at the system. But most disturbing, perhaps, the percentage of students transferring from community colleges to senior institutions has declined, and the argument is being made that educational opportunities, especially for minority students, are too restricted. . . .
By sharpening their goals and strengthening their academic core, community colleges can continue to fulfill, in new and creative ways, their traditional mission as “colleges of the people.”
— Ernest L. Boyer, in “Community of colleges ready for a facelift,” published in The Times Higher Education Supplement, May 6, 1988. (Boyer had a regular column in this publication for many years.)
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