Spotlight on Coffee, Dale and Geneva: Higher Education

Two institutions of higher learning provide certificate and degree options for area residents

Students at Enterprise State Community College.

Enterprise State Community College/Alabama Aviation Center

Enterprise State Community College and the Alabama Aviation College, a unit of ESCC, offer academic transfer and technical degree programs for students, as well as customized employee training solutions.

Facilities and additional programs are on the agenda for ESCC to help meet an increased need for a trained workforce in areas from health care to automotive maintenance to industrial automation.

Several renovation and construction projects will be taking place to modernize and add facilities on both campuses. These projects include a performing arts center, designed to offer the growing fine arts community at the college and in the Wiregrass a facility to showcase their talents, and a new workforce technology center that will house welding, automotive technology, mechatronics/CNC machining, construction science, plumbing and electric, and HVAC.  The James Douglas Brown Sr. Building also is being renovated on the AAC campus to provide classrooms, labs and a hangar for aviation training. A new softball and baseball complex is expected to open this spring.

In addition to new facilities, ESCC saw the addition of the mechatronics program on the Enterprise campus for the Fall 2022 semester, a program already offered on the AAC campus. Since Spring 2022, ESCC added the state’s first nursing bridge program and a traditional, three-semester practical nursing program. The bridge program allows paramedics and others to add nursing credentials.

Daniel Long, former vice president and dean of instruction, was named the sixth president of Enterprise State in 2022. Chellye Stump was named dean of administrative services and Dr. Anna Head was named dean of instruction.

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For the Fall 2022 semester, ESCC saw an 11% increase in enrollment to more than 2,000 students. For the Spring 2023 semester, the college saw another 15% increase.

Reopening Wallace Community College – Dothan’s library.

Wallace Community College-Dothan

WCCD has campuses in Dothan and Eufaula. It serves approximately 4,000 students each year through career technical and academic programs, including health sciences, workforce development, dual enrollment for high school students, GED classes and adult education. There are 431 full-time and part-time faculty and staff.

Programs with the highest enrollment include general studies and nursing.

WCCD recently was recognized, for the second year in a row, for being a top 10 feeder school to the Samuel Ginn College of Engineering at Auburn University. It also won reaccreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

The college also holds many workforce development events for K-12 students. A recent one is the health sciences simulation clinic for 1,300 Wiregrass second graders. And the college also has partnerships with several other colleges for easier transfer for a four-year degree.

In addition, the college recently celebrated the grand opening of the renovated Phillip J. Hamm Library on the Dothan campus.

This article appears in the March 2023 issue of Business Alabama.

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