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HCC Celebrates Community College Month


Haywood Community College joins the national celebration of Community College Month with a look at the annual impact the college provides to Haywood County. Supporting more than 1,430 jobs, HCC has a $64.8 million annual impact on the regional economy, according to a recent report. The impact of increased earnings of HCC alumni and businesses they work for totaled $46.9 million.

“Although we’ve known for a long time the positive impact HCC makes in our community, this study gives a new perspective. HCC is a driver of our workforce and economy in Haywood County and beyond. For every dollar invested in their education, students gain $4.70 in lifetime earnings. New careers and futures start here!” explains HCC President Dr. Shelley White.

The report reflected the work of many partners to produce a regional Economic Impact Study for each of the state’s 58 community colleges, as well as an overall statewide report. The studies found that each of North Carolina’s community colleges contributes millions of dollars into the regions they serve - creating jobs and opportunities for local residents. North Carolina’s 58 community colleges represent a combined $19 billion in annual impact on the state’s economy and support one out of every 19 jobs in the state.

“The return on investment in our community colleges is unmatched - not only for students and parents, but taxpayers and our entire state economy,” said N.C. Community College System President Thomas Stith. “We are proud of the contributions of our graduates and employees to enhance and strengthen our North Carolina communities.”

North Carolina Community Colleges serve an incredibly diverse student population and put educational and career goals within reach. These students enjoy an average rate of return on their college investment of 22.3%. North Carolina community colleges are known for their innovative programs for education, training and support, leading to wage-earning jobs.

“Our community colleges are among the state’s most critical assets to leverage and accelerate the education and upskilling of our State’s homegrown talent,” said MC Belk Pilon, president and board chair of the John M. Belk Endowment. “As we look ahead, we must continue and accelerate investments in our 58 community colleges to ensure we increase access to economic mobility, prepare North Carolinians for the jobs of today and tomorrow, and further grow local and state economies.”

With over 30 curricular programs in 9 different career clusters, students at HCC can pursue a certificate, diploma or associate degree at a fraction of the cost of a four-year school. Students at HCC enjoy small classes and personalized attention, including the support of a Success Coach.

According to Dr. White, “Success Coaches provide support for HCC students from the start and throughout their education – assisting with enrollment, providing resources, and encouraging students to stay on track.”

HCC offers a variety of courses delivered in an array of methods to fit busy schedules. From in-person to fully online, the College has what students need to create a flexible schedule for those who are employed or may also be balancing a family, making it easy to get the credentials needed to move forward.

Starting in the fall 2022 term, HCC will be expanding new delivery methods for certain courses, including Hyflex. For this option, students will have a set day and time for class but with the option of joining in person or online. Evening times will also be available. In addition, students can choose a Synchronous Online option for certain courses. This allows students to learn online from any location while offering the advantages of live classroom interaction with faculty and other students.

Financial aid options are now widely available for all students and with a combination of funding sources, most students can attend HCC at no cost. Through the generosity of donors, HCC has a variety of scholarship opportunities available to students as well. Students graduating in 2022 from high schools in Haywood County can obtain funding through HCC’s Tuition Free Guarantee or the Longleaf Commitment Grant, offered by the State of North Carolina. The most important step in determining financial aid is completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

Registration is now open for summer and fall semesters. For more information, visit or call 828-627-2821.



Haywood Community College (HCC) is part of the North Carolina Community College System and is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges & Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC). Founded in 1965, it is an open-door institution with the mission of serving the educational needs and economic growth of our community by promoting lifelong student learning and success. This includes programs for Haywood County high school students through Career and College Promise and Haywood Early College. The college campus, a designated arboretum, boasts one of the most beautiful college campuses in the state with an iconic mill pond, seasonal dahlia and rhododendron gardens, an 18-hole disc golf course and a walking trail.