College campus busy during the relatively quiet ‘summer mode’


By President Dr. Thomas Isekenegbe

Cumberland County College is officially in “summer mode,” with the completion of spring semester, commencement and the national search for the vice president, academic affairs and enrollment services. As noted in recent Daily Journal articles, the college graduated its largest class of 614 students and Dr. Jacqueline Galbiati was hired as the vice president. Best wishes to the graduates and Dr. Galbiati, who I think will excel in this position.

It’s relatively quiet on campus with most of the faculty and students gone for the summer. But there are a host of activities and preparations underway for the fall semester.

Area children, ages 5 to 16, are taking Summer Academy for Kids classes such as Robotics, Cooking, Theatre and Graphic Design. There’s still time to sign up for classes, which run through Aug. 27.

Summer sessions 1 and 2 are currently underway with students taking an array of courses for varied reasons. Students at four-year universities take summer courses to transfer credits back to their universities. High school graduates and other students take summer courses so they can ‘hit the ground running’ in the fall semester. Students can still register for summer session 3, which begins July 7, and fall semester registration and new student orientations are being held throughout the summer.

Deans and other employees are developing new programs and reviewing the college’s curricula to ensure that our courses are relevant and in career fields that are in demand. Since the majority of our students rely on financial assistance to pay for their college expenses, this is a busy time for the Financial Aid office, which reports that financial aid applications are up 18 percent over last year.

CCC’s enrollment has been rising every year for the past decade, and we want to engage, retain and graduate our students. That’s why the college is preparing this summer to open the Center for Academic and Student Success this fall. The center will serve as the hub for the college’s student retention activities, including counseling, tutoring and supplemental instruction.

During these challenging economic times, CCC is seeking external funding to add or supplement programs that enhance student success. The Grants Office is preparing proposals for three federal grants this summer. The Title III Strengthening Institutions Grant would enable the college to purchase an upgraded information management system.

The National Science Foundation (NSF) Advanced Technology Education Grant would assist the college in continuing to upgrade its Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics (STEM) programs, focusing on sustainable energy.

And a grant from the federal Health Resources Service Administration (HRSA) would further strengthen the college’s outstanding Nursing program.

So even though the campus seems more serene during the summer, CCC is constantly moving forward; providing more and more opportunities for residents to succeed. I’m very proud of our staff and students.