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Rural Educator Academy
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The Community Colleges of Appalachia (CCA) CCA received funding from the Ascendium Education Group for the Developing the Rural Educator Academy (REA) project over a twenty-four-month grant period, beginning November 1, 2021.   In April 2023, CCA was granted additional funding to conduct a second cohort of the Rural Educator Academy due to the success of the inaugural cohort.  The second cohort will begin in June of 2023 and conclude June of 2024.  

The overarching purpose of this new professional development venture is to cultivate the competencies and skills required for Appalachian community college faculty, student services staff, and leaders to improve rural student outcomes, particularly for lower income students and students of color. Recognizing that changes must occur at both the institutional level and at the course-level, the Rural Educator Academy will be designed as two complementary experiences: (1) a REA for institutional leaders, and (2) a REA for faculty and student services staff. 

Links to Resources

Executive Board 

CCA REA Brief 1 - June 2022

CCA REA Application - Cohort#2 (2023-24)

REA Expectations and Timeline

Evaluation Report and Core Competencies - October 2022

Cohort 1 Report Briefs

Allegheny College of Maryland

Isothermal Community College

Mountain Empire Community College

Somerset Community College

Tri-County Technical College

West Virginia University at Parkersburg

Archived Links

Request for Proposal 

QR Code for Application 

QR Code for Webinars

CCA REA Application PDF form for Cohort 1

CCA REA Application E-Form (Cohort 1)

Ascendium Education Group is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization committed to helping people reach the education and career goals that matter to them. Ascendium invests in initiatives designed to increase the number of students from low-income backgrounds who complete postsecondary degrees, certificates and workforce training programs, with an emphasis on first-generation students, incarcerated adults, rural community members, students of color and veterans. Ascendium's work identifies, validates and expands best practices to promote large-scale change at the institutional, system and state levels, with the intention of elevating opportunity for all. For more information, visit

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