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News Releases @ TCC

Focused on student success, TCC noted for outstanding digital resources, innovation
4 technology awards to TCC, staff recently announced

HAMPTON ROADS, Va. (Sept. 29, 2011) – Once again, Tidewater Community College has received national and statewide recognition as a leading community college for exceptional technology support for students and educators. The four recent awards are as follows:

The Center for Digital Education and Converge Online magazine’s 7th Annual Digital Community Colleges Survey has ranked TCC seventh in the Large Colleges Category - 10,000 Students or More, announced Sept. 27. The survey documents advances made by community colleges in utilizing information technology and recognizes which colleges provide a high level of service to their faculty, students and communities as a result.

The Center for Digital Education and Converge magazine also awarded TCC a 2011 Digital Education Achievement Award in the Higher Education Digital Application/Project category for its “Direct Student Loan Application and Financial Aid Education” online programs. The awards recognize outstanding contributions at the application, intranet and infrastructure level, all to the benefit and quality of online education for students and teachers.

TCC’s winning technology use includes taking the lead in educating its students on the implications of financial aid debt. Through the innovative use of business process planning and digital technology, TCC helps students borrow responsibly and make sound investments in their education. TCC’s leadership in this area has been recognized by the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators and local and national news. The Associated Press, USA Today, Chronicle of Higher Education, Inside Higher Ed, NBC Nightly News and Fox News are some of the media that featured TCC’s new loan process.

The Center for Digital Education (CDE) is a national research and advisory institute specializing in K-12 and higher education technology trends, policy and funding. The Center is a division of e.Republic, a national publishing, event and research company focused on smart media for public sector innovation.

In addition, TCC was noted among the most innovative projects in government information technology with a 2011 Governor's Technology Award, presented to 24 winners in nine categories on Sept. 26 during a ceremony at the Commonwealth of Virginia Innovative Technology Symposium (COVITS). TCC received an honorable mention for its innovative financial aid literacy program, “Student Loan Education and Counseling,” in the awards category, Innovation in Higher Education.

TCC Vice President Richard Andersen, center, accepts the award from Secretary of Technology James Duffey, left, and Chief Information Officer of the Commonwealth Sam Nixon. Photo by Charlie Reilly, VITA

Other contributing factors to TCC’s technology awards include: an array of digital resources such as the FOCUS (Freshman Orientation Centered Upon Success) online orientation program, designed to help students navigate the first-year college experience; distance learning and online registration; professional development labs for faculty on each of its four campuses – thanks to a $1 million gift from Frank Batten Sr.; hands-on clinical training with human patient simulators in health profession programs; and an in-depth modeling and simulation program. In addition, the college’s first Batten Fellow, professor Gary Cross, has created pioneering simulations in respiratory therapy to enhance education and training for students and medical professionals.

The fourth technology award went to TCC’s William Harlow, instructional technologist, who won the prestigious 2011 Blackboard Catalyst Award of Excellence in Staff Development. The worldwide Blackboard awards recognize stellar contributions to the educational community by e-Learning professionals, systems administrators and institutional staff.

Harlow attributes the success to his hands-on approach with faculty, which includes a broad range of training options, shared materials and surveying faculty about current and future needs.

For over a decade, Blackboard Catalyst awards have celebrated innovation and excellence in the Blackboard global community. This year, 50 individuals and organizations were recognized for innovative thinking and best practices in education.


Laurie White

Tidewater Community College - the largest provider of higher education and Workforce Solutions services in Hampton Roads - served more than 46,000 students in 2010-11. The 16th highest associate-degree producer in the nation, TCC offers more than 150 programs including business administration, culinary arts, general studies, modeling and simulation, network security, nursing, and automotive technology. Among the fastest-growing two-year institutions in the United States, TCC was founded in 1968 as a part of the Virginia Community College System. The college serves the South Hampton Roads region with campuses in Chesapeake, Norfolk, Portsmouth and Virginia Beach as well as the TCC Jeanne and George Roper Performing Arts Center in Norfolk’s theater district, the Visual Arts Center in Olde Towne Portsmouth, the Regional Automotive Center in Chesapeake, and the Regional Health Professions Center and the Advanced Technology Center in Virginia Beach, as well as the Regional Workforce Solutions Center in Suffolk. Forty-five percent of the region’s residents attending a college or university in Virginia last fall were enrolled at TCC. For more information, visit