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Appalachian Learning Alliance Receives NCAEA Creative and Innovative Program Award

BOONE — The Appalachian Learning Alliance (ALA) has received the N.C. Adult Education Association’s (NCAEA) Creative and Innovative Program Award.

NCAEA members include adult educators and administrators from both two-year and four-year colleges and universities, community colleges, as well as Area Health Education Centers, the N.C. Agricultural Extension Service, other organizations with adult educators, private practitioners, and adult education students.

Dr. Jim Reeves is executive coordinator of the ALA. He is retired president of Surry Community College.

The Appalachian Learning Alliance is a partnership between Appalachian State University and 10 regional community colleges in Western North Carolina.

In addition to Appalachian, alliance members are Caldwell Community College, Catawba Valley Community College, Cleveland Community College, Forsyth Technical Community College, Isothermal Community College, Mayland Community College, McDowell Community College, Surry Community College, Western Piedmont Community College and Wilkes Community College.

Through the alliance, students in a 16-county region extending from Winston-Salem to Marion and from the Virginia border to South Carolina, can earn select college degrees from Appalachian without being a Boone-based student.

This fall, Appalachian courses through the nine community colleges campuses accounted for about 9,000 credit hours, up from 4,000 credit hours last year. About 750 students, most of them non-traditional students, are taking part in these programs.

Degree programs in education are available at Catawba Valley, Cleveland, Isothermal and Mayland community colleges. A business management degree program is available at Catawba Valley, Surry, Western Piedmont and Wilkes community colleges. A social work degree program is in place at Caldwell and Western Piedmont community colleges.