BELLEVUE, Wash. — Nov. 20, 2006 — Microsoft Corp. today designated Bellevue Community College (BCC) the second Microsoft® IT Showcase School in the nation, recognizing the college’s leadership in preparing students for the digital age.
“The future economic health of our region and the nation depends on preparing students for the growing opportunities provided by advances in technology,” said Steve Ballmer, chief executive officer at Microsoft. “That’s why we support Bellevue Community College’s trailblazing efforts in technology education. We want to help other colleges learn from BCC’s success, so that even more students can benefit.”
The IT Showcase School program seeks to recognize those institutions of higher learning that have demonstrated leadership in information technology (IT) education and teaching and help them share that knowledge and experience broadly.
In naming BCC an IT Showcase School, Microsoft highlighted the college’s following programs and achievements:
Annual Working Connections summer seminars to train teachers in new IT programs and concepts (created in cooperation with Microsoft)
Fast Track training programs (full certificate programs condensed to six to eight months of intensive study, focused primarily on Microsoft technologies and certification), which were pioneered by BCC and are now emulated across the nation
IT Job-Shadowing for high school and community college teachers
National Workforce Center for Emerging Technologies (a National Science Foundation Advanced Technology Education Center of Excellence), which develops IT skill standards and curricula and helps promote best practices in technology education to benefit students, faculty and industry regionally and nationally
Business Intelligence certificate programs (among the few offered in an area of growing need for employers)
Life Sciences Informatics programs and National Life Sciences Informatics Center of Excellence, one of five biotech education centers nationally supported by the U.S. Department of Labor
Innovative MyBCC Web portal created collaboratively with Microsoft, providing a central point of access to commonly used tools, applications and services; individual course sites that allow faculty to distribute online materials to students; and innovative data-mining tools for college administrators to use in forecasting and decision-making
“We are honored to be chosen by Microsoft as its second national IT Showcase School and its only community college. BCC has, for many years, developed innovative programs that educate students to be adaptable to changing environments and emerging technologies,” said Jean Floten, president of BCC. “A great deal of our success in IT education is due to the support Microsoft has provided community and technical colleges nationally as part of its intense commitment to the advancement of education. Its additional support now will help us all continue to turn out the students our employers need to stay competitive.”
Schools in the IT Showcase School program will benefit from a deep relationship with Microsoft and access to a broad array of customized learning resources tailored to the schools’ specific needs. Further, Microsoft will support schools in the program so that they may accomplish the following goals:
Share best practices
Highlight innovative curriculum and pedagogy
Collaborate with other schools looking to adopt innovative IT curricula and programs and encourage women and minority enrollments in IT
Create the technical infrastructure needed to support future innovation
BCC has a strong history of collaboration with Microsoft, including premier membership status in the Microsoft IT Academy Program, offering up-to-date training, education and certification preparation using Microsoft technologies and Microsoft-certified instructors.
BCC is also the largest provider of Microsoft training and education among Washington state’s 34 community and technical colleges and one of the largest in the country. BCC delivers hundreds of courses annually for thousands of students and industry professionals pursuing advanced training and certification using Microsoft products.
BCC was also the first college in the nation to deliver Microsoft .NET programming training for incumbent workers and operates one of the highest-volume testing centers for Microsoft certifications in the U.S.
BCC joins the University of Massachusetts Amherst, selected in October 2005 as the first national Microsoft IT Showcase School for its strong Information Technology Program, IT Curriculum Case Studies, Learning Commons, Women in Technology Initiatives, Center for Teaching and other leadership IT programs.
About Bellevue Community College
Serving 35,000 students annually, Bellevue Community College is Washington state’s third largest institution of higher education. BCC offers transfer study (the first two years of college) as well as career-related training in 90 fields including information technology, health sciences and business. BCC’s Continuing Education division offers programs in computing, various work-related topics, art, travel, languages and personal enrichment, as well as business contract training and small business development. Visit BCC on the web at www.bcc.ctc.edu.
Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT”) is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.
Note to editors: If you are interested in viewing additional information on Microsoft, please visit the Microsoft Web page at http://www.microsoft.com/presspass on Microsoft’s corporate information pages. Web links, telephone numbers and titles were correct at time of publication, but may since have changed. For additional assistance, journalists and analysts may contact Microsoft’s Rapid Response Team or other appropriate contacts listed at http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/contactpr.mspx.