Montgomery College a Finalist for Two American Association of Community Colleges Awards of Excellence

Winners to Be Announced at Annual Convention April 18-21 in San Antonio

Montgomery College is a finalist for two American Association of Community Colleges (AACC) Awards of Excellence which recognize exceptional work among the nation's two-year colleges.

President Dr. DeRionne P. Pollard is one of four finalists in the "Emerging Leadership" category. The College itself is one of four finalists recognized for an "Outstanding College/Corporate Partnership” based on its relationship with Holy Cross Health, and specifically, the new Holy Cross Germantown Hospital.

Just recently, Holy Cross Health and Montgomery College entered into a new five-year collaboration agreement to expand the innovative partnership between the two organizations. Montgomery College and Holy Cross Health's relationship spans more than a decade in serving the students and the Montgomery County community. The original and very successful partnership helped expand nurse enrollment and graduation by 38 percent and 48 percent, respectively.

Holy Cross Germantown Hospital anchors the Hercules Pinkney Life Sciences Park, which encompasses approximately 40 acres on the Montgomery College-Germantown Campus. Holy Cross Germantown Hospital is the first hospital in the United States to be located on the campus of a community college.

The winners of each category will be announced at the annual AACC convention April 18-21 in San Antonio, Texas. For a list of the other finalists, click here.

“I am humbled that Montgomery College has been named a finalist for these two prestigious awards. However, the most enduring honor is that I can stand alongside our staff and faculty and recognize them as the driving forces responsible for the success of our students and our institution,” Pollard said. “Furthermore, the partnerships we’ve created in the community continue to place the College at the forefront of workforce development and economic sustainability in Montgomery County.”

The AACC Emerging Leadership Award recognizes CEOs who have developed exemplary systems of leadership and professional development and created a campus culture that proactively supports career and leadership advancement for all campus personnel. Nominees should demonstrate an ongoing commitment to leadership development for emerging community college leaders through programming that includes exposure to the AACC Competencies for Community College Leaders.

Since her 2010 inauguration as president of Montgomery College, Pollard has spearheaded the development of a new Montgomery College mission and Montgomery College 2020, the institution’s strategic plan. Other priorities have included partnering with Montgomery County Public Schools and the Universities at Shady Grove in the creation of Achieving Collegiate Excellence and Success (ACES), a support program designed to help students transition from high school to college completion.

Pollard was named a 2014 White House Champion of Change, is a graduate of Leadership Montgomery and was named its Outstanding Leader for 2013. Other awards and honors include Washingtonian Magazine’s 100 Most Powerful Women; the Daily Record’s Influential Marylander; and Washington Business Journal’s Minority Business Leader Award.

The Outstanding College/Corporate Partnership Award honors local, regional and national collaboration between a college and corporate partner that has achieved demonstrable, multi-year success in advancing the mission of the institution(s), the economic prosperity of a community, region or the nation, and the learning excellence of students.

Pollard formerly served as president of Las Positas College in Livermore, California. Her community college career began at College of Lake County (Ill.) as a faculty member in English. She received her PhD in educational leadership and policy studies in higher education from Loyola University Chicago and her MA and BA in English from Iowa State University.

The AACC annual convention is an event that attracts close to 2,000 educators, policymakers, corporate and foundation representatives each year. In addition to the Emerging Leadership and Outstanding College/Corporate Partnership Awards, categories include Advancing Diversity, Community College Safety Planning and Leadership, Exemplary CEO/Board, Faculty Innovation and Student Success.

Finalists for the AACC Awards of Excellence were chosen by a specially-appointed committee of the association’s board of directors, based on specific criteria.

About Montgomery College
Montgomery College is a public, open admissions community college with campuses in Germantown, Rockville, and Takoma Park/Silver Spring, plus workforce development/continuing education centers and off-site programs throughout Montgomery County, Md. The College serves nearly 60,000 students a year, through both credit and noncredit programs, in more than 130 areas of study.

About the AACC
The American Association of Community Colleges is a national organization representing the nation’s over 1,100 community, junior and technical colleges and their 13.5 million students. Community colleges are the largest sector of higher education, enrolling almost half of all U.S. undergraduates. For more information about AACC and community colleges, see


About Us

On September 16, 1946, the first Montgomery College classes were held in the evenings at a local high school with a student body of 186 men and women. Today, the College has grown to a multi-campus institution and serves nearly 60,000 students a year, through both credit and noncredit programs, in more than 100 areas of study.