Seeing Progress in the Dog Days of Summer


By Kenneth L. Ender, Ph.D. President

This morning Sammy and I went for our usual four-mile run. However, there was nothing “usual” about it. Typically, Sam is out in front sniffing and snorting, chasing and cavorting with any animal nearby.

Today however, he hardly wandered, preferring to stay close and trot along side, tongue hanging out, keeping up, but not charging out front. Why? The dog days.

It’s July. Summer is definitely here, with high temperatures and humidity. We all begin to drag a little, as breathing is tough and the air slightly uncomfortable.

That’s the bad news.

The good news: It’s July. Jersey corn, tomatoes and all the other luscious products of the Garden State grow in our own Cumberland gardens.

It’s July. We’re into the second summer session at Cumberland County College, and record numbers of students are taking classes. Overall summer enrollment is up again this year.

It’s July. We’re getting back from, getting ready to, or in the middle of summer vacations with family and friends. Vacation preparation is as exciting as vacation participation. So the enjoyment is extended as we anticipate and then engage in this summer ritual.

July is when the academic calendar is at its ebbing point. While the college’s fiscal year officially ends on June 30, we teach classes all summer. September always serves as the symbolic beginning of the new college year.

So as we enjoy the summer garden, it’s a great time to reflect on the bounty from the past year at the college. The harvest was substantial as evidenced by the outstanding achievements of our graduates, faculty and staff.

And the college garden is currently being sown with fresh seeds. Throughout the summer, there are new student orientations and youth programs for potential students. And there’s a quiet frenzy on campus as we make sure all personnel are in place and ready for the fall semester in September.

But the process is in place, and it’s going to happen again. During the academic year, students and employees are going to grow together. And the college’s glorious garden will bloom again next year, and the next, and the next.

And the annual harvest benefits the entire community.