The College, like most community colleges, faces strong headwinds from many different sources, including economic, public funding, demographics, accreditation/compliance, and student engagement. A few of these are summarized below with related implications that should be considered as Morton College continues to develop its operational plans.


  1. The number of people in the traditional (age 18-24) student demographic is declining by 4-6% over the next decade
  2. Students age 24 and older are often already in the workforce and continue to seek education that they can balance with their other life commitments
  3. Students’ capacity to pay (especially double tuition for non-sponsors)
  4. Continued poor perception of community colleges as a viable option toward a 4-year degree
  5. MC losing students to enrollment and transfers to other local community college options
  6. Accreditor/governmental requirements: assessment, accountability for outcomes (employment and graduation)
  7. Rapid technology change and incremental funding to support
  8. Little time to research new technologies, including more emphasis and investment in mobile technologies and support structures
  9. Flat public funding

Morton College Solution

  1. Enhance strategies to improve high school yield rates (market share) and target underserved populations
  2. Enhance opportunities for access by working adults (scheduling, locations, services, online options)
  3. Increase financial aid participation; increase scholarship sources and opportunities
  4. Increase public recognition of community college value, especially for addressing workforce shortages
  5. Increase the current number of articulation agreements with area 4-year colleges
  6. Pursue collaborative programs to stem competition, or more aggressively show our MC competitive differentiators
  7. Strengthen focus on data-driven decision making in all areas
  8. Stay abreast of educational delivery changes due to technology, new instructional models, students’ learning needs and preferences especially through distance education. In addition, find ways to leverage technology to enhance efficiency in service delivery and administrative processes
  9. Continue to educate our region’s elected representatives on the issues of public funding, financial aid, and pressures on wages, so that they understand the impacts on the College

Measurable Outcomes

  1. Document all new course and program offerings with AY that demonstrate an intentional response to workforce demands
  2. Document opportunities created to make education to adults aged 24+ more accessible
  3. Document improvement in financial aid participation: provide new scholarships sources and participation by active students
  4. Document all communication pieces targeted to prospectives with MC response to workforce shortages
  5. List new articulation agreements through SP period and document a more streamlined and practical pathway for students to ensure a smooth transition into 4-year degree program
  6. STEM Teacher Preparation grant AY18; STEAMers Summer Camp program;
  7. Document improvements in data collection (both internal and external) and how it has been used to drive specific decisions
  8. Transitioned to PeopleAdmin for online posting of new job openings and for accepting and approving of applications; Provide documentation of other technogical improvements in both internal and delivery systems
  9. Document and provide interactions, meetings, conferences, etc in which College’s interests were communicated to state and local reps and lobbyists