National College twice honored as nationwide leader by higher education peers
National College President Frank Longaker received the Imagine America Foundation’s Lifetime Achievement Award, honoring his 40 years of service to career education and tens of thousands of students and graduates, at the annual conference of the Association of Private Sector Colleges & Universities (APSCU) last week. In addition, the College also received the TOPS Award from APSCU, recognizing its grassroots advocacy efforts on behalf of the College’s students.
“I am deeply honored and humbled to receive this recognition from the Imagine America Foundation,” said President Longaker. “I’m also thankful for the support of my family, the college’s faculty and staff, and most importantly, the students and graduates of National College.”
President Longaker joined the College’s Lexington, Kentucky Campus in 1972 as an instructor, and quickly advanced through a variety of roles in the college’s senior administration, eventually becoming president of the college. Under his guidance, the College has developed new curricula and academic programs, expanded its offerings to numerous communities, and helped tens of thousands of students achieve their educational and career goals.
President Longaker leads by example. A Vietnam Veteran, President Longaker has always made honoring our nation’s military men and women a key element of the College’s mission, both through education and public recognition. Embodying National College’s mission to produce educated men and women who are also active citizens, President Longaker is highly engaged in the communities. In civic affairs, he is a strong advocate for student choice, economic development, and responsible government. He has served on numerous boards and commissions, and held leadership roles in community organizations, including as president of the Salem-Roanoke County Chamber of Commerce. Most recently, he was appointed by Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell to the Workforce Development Subgroup of the Governor’s Economic Development and Job Creation Commission, whose public meeting was hosted by the National College Harrisonburg Campus. A competitive outdoor athlete he was the founding sponsor of the National College Blue Ridge Marathon, which has just completed its highly successful third year.
“A mentor and predecessor, President Joseph E. Hurn, gave me these words of wisdom: if you do what is in the best interests of the student, everything else at the college will take care of itself,” remarked President Longaker. “I have applied that philosophy throughout my years of service to National College, and I believe it has served us well.”
The Imagine America Foundation (IAF), established in 1982, is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to providing scholarships for education, research and training support for the career college sector. The annual Imagine America Foundation Lifetime Achievement Award recognizes career college leaders who have provided exceptional support and leadership to the career college sector. The award was presented at the conclusion of the 2012 APSCU Annual Convention & Exposition, June 23, 2012.