Hearing the sweet song of educational success


February marks the time in the spring semester at Cumberland County College when students settle in and get serious about their studies.

During the first week of the semester in January, students added and dropped courses, identified their favorite parking spots and found the warmer areas on campus to pause between their classes. And now the library is beginning to see more patrons as the first papers become due. This is a busy, yet quiet time on campus as folks are engaged in work and stay indoors most of the day.

At this time of year, the campus may seem empty. But looks can be deceiving. We are experiencing the highest spring semester enrollment in the college’s 41-year history with 3,469 students; an 8.5 percent increase over the 2007 spring semester enrollment.

CCC’s student body is as diverse as the community, with students of all ages and backgrounds setting goals and working with college employees to achieve them. This is a vibrant community on campus where students learn from talented professors, and they also learn from each other. Students share their unique experiences in classrooms and laboratories throughout the campus.

So in this chilly weather, it may appear somewhat barren on the college’s grounds except for the hourly changing of the classes. But there’s magic happening every day inside the buildings. Spring semester begins somewhat quietly and gradually builds to a joyful roar at the May 15 commencement ceremony.

In between, students will be challenged by our knowledgeable and caring professors to achieve goals that they didn’t think were possible. This bit of magic happens every day at Cumberland. Since it occurs daily, we can sometimes take it for granted.

But the college is truly a place for miracles. Young and older students discover new worlds and possibilities. And the music of education becomes a little louder day-by-day as students gain confidence in their abilities. Many brave students will hurdle obstacles on their road to success. And that will make their tunes sweeter.

So in about a month, winter will give way to spring. And our students will emerge from the buildings to celebrate their educational and personal growth in a season of endless possibilities. In April and May, there will be daily activities where students will showcase their academic and leadership skills. The students’ songs will be diverse, but they will share the harmony of an optimism fueled by their recently acquired knowledge and skills.

And we will all revel in their music.