Broward College has reached yet another summit of community college achievement this month, having been recognized by the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC) in several award categories during their recent awards gala in Denver on Monday, April 3.

The annual American Association of Community Colleges Awards of Excellence honor “promising practices” among its more than 1,000 member colleges. During the gala, the AACC recognized Broward College in the categories of improving post-secondary access and job training opportunities, outstanding college/corporate partnership, and faculty innovation.

The AACC, which represents more than 12 million students through its member institutions, is a strong proponent of closing the gap between what skills businesses need and how post-secondary institutions are preparing their students. Awards were bestowed in 10 categories this year, with finalists selected by a committee of AACC board members.

Always Uplifting

Broward College received recognition for the Broward UP™ (Unlimited Potential) model, which improves job opportunities and economic mobility in areas with greatest need; a partnership with Bank of America to eliminate barriers for job training and education for key communities; and an Artificial Intelligence Incubator to create an A.I. workforce pathway.

Launched in 2018, Broward UP has served more than 3,500 residents and made it possible for more than 2,200 students to earn workforce readiness certificates or industry-specific certifications. Broward UP seeks to improve access to education and economic mobility in communities with the highest rates of unemployment and low post-secondary education attainment by removing barriers and offering educational opportunities directly in these neighborhoods. The model is focused on 11 zip codes which represent 17 of the 31 cities in Broward County. Its success has generated national attention and the support of community, municipal, and non-profit partnerships.

The AACC cited the College’s partnership with Bank of America (BOA) as a model of the collective impact of partnerships that bring together business leaders and educators to ensure their strategies are aligned. Since 2016, Broward College and Bank of America have partnered to create access to workforce education, specifically for at-risk youth, the formerly incarcerated, the unemployed/underemployed, and those living in marginalized communities, and provide training in strategic growth and development to staff.  Bank of America was also an early investor in Broward UP.

Faculty Innovation

The Faculty Innovation Award went to Dr. Yuri Villanueva for his work to help students secure STEM-related jobs. Dr. Villanueva, a member of the STEM Pathway faculty, was instrumental in developing an Artificial Intelligence (A.I.) Incubator Network Initiative to create an A.I. workforce pathway for students. He promotes the integration of AI concepts and principles across multiple disciplines and career paths to better prepare students for jobs in technical fields. Villanueva has also been instrumental in developing AI courses including two machine learning/artificial intelligence technical certificate programs that will be offered to students in the Fall of 2023: Data Specialization and Data Analyst.

To learn more about these and other award-winning programs at Broward College, explore


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