MEDIA RELEASE: New video shows value of North Carolina community colleges

New video shows value of North Carolina community colleges
The weekly videos from Together NC’s Speak NC campaign document individuals, families, and groups who rely on state services 
 
RALEIGH (May 10, 2011) – Teachers, students and workers rely on North Carolina’s community college system – but budget cuts could limit access to these vital campuses, a new video releasedtoday describes.
 
During this recession, community colleges have been a vital lifeline for workers to update their training and retool their skills for new jobs. The video interviews a professor and a student, an Air Force veteran, from Wake Technical Community College.
 
The Speak NC video, released by the Together NC coalition, is part of a campaign documenting the positive impact of state programs and services on families and communities throughout North Carolina.
 
Despite the fact that the community college system has added the equivalent of the entire NC State University campus to their enrollment, funding for North Carolina’s 58 community colleges has dropped significantly in the current proposed budget and over the last two years of deep budget cuts.  Community college may cease to be an option for many North Carolinians if these budget cuts continue.
 
The video is the fifth in a series produced by Together NC. The videos highlight North Carolina residents who benefit from vital public investments. The videos are available on the new Speak NC website. Speak NC aims to show the human impact of state programs and services that touch thousands of North  Carolinians every year.
 
Each week, Speak NC will post a new video that documents how an individual, family, or group of people benefits from various state services. Many of these services are at risk of severe cuts, as state legislators meet at the General Assembly and strategize how to balance the state budget.
 
“Missing from our state budget debate was a real sense of how state services impact real people, their families, and communities amidst all the numbers,” said Louisa Warren, a coordinator of Together NC. “Speak NC is about changing that and bringing forth the voices of North Carolinians to speak for themselves about how public investments have enriched their lives and paved the way for economic opportunity.”
 
Together NC invites citizens to watch the stories on Speak NC and share them with friends, family, and local legislators to demonstrate how many of these programs provide crucial aid to families and bolster local economies. 
 
Visit Speak NC at www.speaknc.org 
 
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Together NC is a collection of more than 115 non-profit organizations, service providers, and professional associations who have come together to promote wise choices for shared prosperity for all North Carolinians. For more information, visit 
http://www.togethernc.org/
  
CONTACT: Together NC coordinators: Louisa Warren, (919) 801-0465, louisa@ncjustice.org or Rob Thompson, (919) 649-2449, rob@nccovenant.org