Partnerships between Community Colleges and Nonprofits (C2E Partnerships)


In partnership, community colleges and nonprofit organizations can leverage and combine funds, which makes providing quality resources to students more attainable.

Partnerships draw on a variety of funding streams and resources to support their work together. Both nonprofits and community colleges frequently reported the Workforce Investment Act (WIA), state government funding, and foundation funding as the top three sources of funds accessed in the last year to support the work of their partnerships. Trade Adjustment Assistance Community College and Career Training (TAACCCT) grants also play a strong role in funding community colleges to engage in these partnerships. As detailed in the table below, each organization ranked the sources of funding differently.


Utilizing Various Funding Streams Increases the Amount of Resources to Support Student Success.

Community colleges and nonprofits often have similar sources of funding, but the breakdown of their funding sources tend to vary. One of the primary benefits of C2E partnerships is that organizations can leverage a variety of funds to serve the diversity of students’ needs. Nonprofits more frequently reported receiving funding from the federal government, foundations, and individual and business donations while community colleges more commonly reported receiving funding from the state government and fee-for-service payments from businesses.


“[Our partnership] allows us to leverage resources and provide benefits to our program participants that we couldn’t provide if we were completely separate.”

More than Just Cash Resources, Partnerships Also Leverage In-Kind Resources

In addition to cash resources, partnerships reported receiving a variety of in-kind resources to support the work of their partnership. The top three resources identified by both nonprofit organizations and community colleges were guest speakers, training space, and training materials or equipment. About a quarter of the nonprofits and community colleges also noted case managers or counselors as an in-kind resource that supported the partnerships work.