Graduate study of the community college constitutes a small but well-established academic specialty. Its rise in the three decades following World War II paralleled the rapid establishment of community colleges during those years, testifying to the modern university's atake in graduate education for the ever expanding and ever more specialized professions. In he past two decades, the urgent need to fill administrative slots at a growing number of communty colleges has subsided, bringing to the fore fundamental questions about the intellectual purpose and academic integrity of graduate preparation programs for community college leaders. Program establishment and growth are no longer their own justification, and commentators have called for a reexamination of graduate curricula focusing on cummunity college education. This issue initiates the reexamination process, and the chapters provide critical perspectives on the current status of community college education as an academic specialty. The vitality and utility of this academic specialty will depend on a continued dialogue and debate about intellectual purpose and professorial roles. This is the 95th issue in the journal series New Directions for Community Colleges.