Alamance Community College (ACC) is a two year community college located in Graham, North Carolina with another location in Burlington, North Carolina. Founded in 1958, the college provides comprehensive vocational, technical, and general education opportunities.
The college originally offered programs suited to the industries of the area at the time, including industrial chemistry, yarn and fabric analysis, loom fixing, and machine shop. Today, the college has branched out to provide a more comprehensive education and students can work towards associate degrees or certificates from the following Academic Divisions:
- Arts & Sciences
- Business Technologies
- Health and Public Services
- Industrial and Graphics Technologies
There are a variety of academic program options for the diverse student body at ACC. The college offers concentrated, short-term instruction for those who need or wish to finish their studies quickly; part-time work for those who attend part-time, and a variety of options in between. All students earn either an associates degree, diploma, or certificate, depending upon the course.
Arts & Sciences
There are two program tracks offered here: the University Transfer Program and the Biotechnology Program. Common courses such as English and math are offered to help students prepare for a four-year university transfer.
This division educates future business leaders by providing them with classes such emphasizing business administration, computers, office administration, and web technologies.
Health & Public Services
Animal care, criminal justice technology, dental assisting, cosmetology, and fire protection are just some of the courses offered in this college.
Industrial & Graphics Technologies
Students enrolled in this division take courses in air conditioning, automotive, mechanics, carpentry, and landscaping. These are more hands on fields and students will learn the basics.
Cooperative education at ACC is comprised of partnerships between the school and employers in the community. Students engaged in this program alternate between on-the-job training and classroom work by the half-day, day, week, or semester, depending on their particular program of study. Students learn the most up-to-date skills and procedures in their fields, and make sure their classroom work and experience in the field complement each other. Cooperative education is required in the Criminal Justice Technology program and the Culinary Technology program. It is an option as an elective in Accounting, Advertising and Graphic Design, Biotechnology, Business Administration, Business Administration Marketing and Retailing, Computer Information Technology, Mechanical Drafting Technology, Medical Office Administration, and Office Administration.
The Distance Education program offers more than 100 courses. Students may work at their own pace on the content and submit assignments and papers via email. Students can earn an Associate of Arts online, or a certificate in Word Processing, Medical Transcription, Financial Accounting, Managerial Accounting, Accounting and Income Tax, or Early Childhood.
Most Popular Fields of Study
Applicants are encouraged to complete all their paperwork for admissions at least one month before registering for classes. Enrollment in some programs is limited, so the earlier you apply, the more likely you are to gain entrance into the program of your choice. There is no fee for application. Applicants must be high school graduates or have a GED.
Visiting students from other colleges and universities are welcome, although they must fill out an application before registering and are strongly encouraged to get the permission on their home institution in order to ensure that they will receive credit for their work. Visit students must be in good academic standing with their home institution.
International students must take the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) and score at least a 550 on the paper test, 217 on the computer test, or 80 on the Internet test. After being admitted, international students may be required to take the COMPASS placement test for evaluation of English and math skills. International students are also required to submit a notarized affidavit of sponsorship.
Requirements for College Work
Students who do not test up to college level in math or English on the COMPASS will be expected to successfully complete developmental classes in those subjects before enrolling in college level classes. Grades in these classes will not be averaged into the student’s grade point average (GPA).
In addition to the many financial aid options open to any college or university student in the US, ACC offers several dozen of their own need- and merit-based scholarships. There are scholarships available in every department of the college. Residents of North Carolina are also eligible to apply for other available funds in the state, including North Carolina Veterans Affairs Scholarships, North Carolina National Guard Tuition Assistance Plan, North Carolina Vocational Rehabilitation, Work First, and Workforce Investment Act.
Tuition Costs to Consider
Some programs of study require tools, uniforms, or other specialized equipment. Students should factor in these additional costs when choosing their course of study at ACC. Programs with significant additional costs include Automotive, Advertising and Graphic Design, Cosmetology, Dental Assisting, Early Childhood, Medical Assisting, Medical Laboratory Technology, Nursing, and Nursing Assistant.
Insurance and Related Costs
ACC offers optional accident insurance to all students at a minimal cost. Those taking classes with lab work or shop work are encouraged to purchase insurance. Students in Early Childhood, Nursing, Allied Health, and Cosmetology are required to purchase liability insurance through the cashier’s office. Some affiliated programs in the Nursing department require students to be covered by personal health insurance.
Student Financial Aid Details
Student Activities Center
The Student Activities Center provides a space for students to socialize, watch the news, access the Internet, and participate in group activities. Some food and drink choices are available at the Center along with organized recreational opportunities.
Clubs and Organizations
Students are represented by the Student Government Association (SGA), which administrates student groups and liasons with the administration over policy issues affecting students. Student groups include those suitable to a rural population such as Animal Care Club, an organization “dedicated to promoting a more complete understanding of animal care and community participation”; groups that combine several aspects of the college experience such as the Greek service club of the Biotechnology curriculum, Beta Tau Chi; a large number of professional organization clubs such as the Criminal Justice Club, FLORA Horticulture Club, and the Culinary Club; and chapters of national and international groups such as Phi Theta Cappa, an international honors fraternity.
Child Care Center
ACC maintains an on-campus child care center for the children of students, faculty, staff, and the general community. The center is open weekdays year-round from 7 AM to 5:45 PM. During the summer, the child care center operates day camps for school-aged children through 5th grade. The child care center is fully licensed and accredited, and has received a 4-star rating from the North Carolina Division of Child Development.
The Student Development office provides multiple forms of assistance to students, prospective students, and alumni. These services include academic advising, personal counselling, academic testing, job placement, veterans affairs, and registration assistance.
Academic Advising Center
The Academic Advising Center works with currently enrolled students to help them with transfers, curriculum changes, and progressing toward graduation.
The Disabilities Services Office provides assistance with physical accessibility of the campus, integration into the academic environment, and aids and services to allow students with disabilities to succeed academically. Services provided include note takers and the use of readers and interpreters where appropriate.
Student Enrollment Demographics
Additional School Information
The library contains more than 35,000 volumes, including audio-visual materials. The library also maintains several electronic databases that are accessible both at the library and with a library-issued password through the internet from any computer. Wireless internet access is available throughout the library. Students are encouraged to work on research there and make good use of reference librarians as they structure paper topics for their classes.
Academic Skills Lab
The Academic Skills Lab is the home to the campus computer lab for student use. The Skills Lab also has a staff of tutors on call to help students on both an appointment and walk-in basis six days a week.
Literacy instruction is offered through the following programs: Adult Basic Education (ABE), Adult High School, Compensatory Education, General Educational Development (GED), and English as a Second Language (ESL).
Continuing Education for Professionals
Job-oriented training programs exist for new, existing, and expanding business programs and industries in their catchment area as part of their mission to support, develop, and help to recruit businesses.
Testing for Academic Credit
It is possible to earn credit in several subject areas by scoring well on the College Board Advanced Placement (AP) exams. AP credit is granted for classes in Biology, Chemistry, Computer Science, Micro-Economics, Macro-Economics, English, French, American Government and Politics, Statistics, Calculus, Physics, Psychology, Spanish, and US History.
Comparably, students at ACC may earn college credit by scoring an “excellent” rating on the College Level Examination Program (CLEP). Credit can be awarded in the following areas: Accounting, Biology, Chemistry, Algebra, Trigonometry, Statistics, Calculus, Economics, English Composition, and Foreign Language.
Elisabeth Bailey is a freelance writer and editor with particular interests in academics, food,and sustainability . She is also the author of A Taste of the Maritimes: Local, Seasonal Recipes the Whole Year Round and writes regularly for Canadian Farmers’ Almanac and the National Wildlife Federation. Elisabeth and her family live and enjoy great local food in Lunenburg, Nova Scotia.