Students Graduate High School Through ‘Gateway to College’ Program

Eight students recently graduated from high school through Montgomery County Community College’s Gateway to College program. Pictured are (first row, from left) College President Dr. Karen A. Stout; Gateway Director Keima Sheriff; graduates Ne’Cole Casalena, Erika Knappenberger, Meghan Benson and Rachel Voltz; Vice President of Student Affairs and Enrollment Management Dr. Kathrine Swanson; (second row, from left) Resource Specialist Lori Davidson; graduates Justin Leamy, Carlas Rich and James Hanible; and Resource Specialist Esau Collins. Photo by Sandi Yanisko

Eight students recently graduated from high school through Montgomery County Community College’s Gateway to College program. Pictured are (first row, from left) College President Dr. Karen A. Stout; Gateway Director Keima Sheriff; graduates Ne’Cole Casalena, Erika Knappenberger, Meghan Benson and Rachel Voltz; Vice President of Student Affairs and Enrollment Management Dr. Kathrine Swanson; (second row, from left) Resource Specialist Lori Davidson; graduates Justin Leamy, Carlas Rich and James Hanible; and Resource Specialist Esau Collins. Photos by Sandi Yanisko

by Alana J. Mauger

Eight students from Montgomery County Community College’s Gateway to College Program earned their high school diplomas this spring after completing the requirements necessary to graduate from their respective school districts.

Gateway to College is a national network designed for young adults ages 16-21 who are at risk for not completing high school. One of only 43 Gateway to College programs in the country, Montgomery partners locally with 16 area school districts and the Montgomery County Workforce Investment Board (WIB) to help increase high school—and ultimately college—graduation rates.

Spring 2014 graduates include Meghan Benson, Wissahickon; Ne’Cole Casalena, Phoenixville; James Hanible, Pottsgrove; Erika Knappenberger, Souderton; Justin Leamy, Pottsgrove; Jose Ortiz Rivera, Hatboro-Horsham; Carlas Rich, Phoenixville; and Rachel Voltz, Upper Merion. All of the graduates plan to pursue post-secondary education, and at least six will attend Montgomery in the fall.

Ne’Cole Casalena, Phoenixville High School, was selected as valedictorian.

Ne’Cole Casalena, Phoenixville High School, was selected as valedictorian.

One of those graduates, Ne’Cole Casalena, Phoenixville High School, described her journey in rhyming lyrics, speaking as class valedictorian.

“And I want to thank everyone but me, cause without you, I don’t know where I would be. Where I am, as a person, they are life lessons, not a burden…If I could, I wouldn’t change a thing, cause out of 18 years, this was the best spring,” she recited.

In only its first year at Montgomery, the Gateway to College program has grown from 21 students in the fall to 52 this spring. At full capacity, the program will serve up to 150 students annually.

“My Gateway students are some of the most resilient and capable young people I have had the pleasure of supporting on their academic journey,” shared Keima Sheriff, who is MCCC’s Gateway to College program director. “Many are faced with incredibly difficult life circumstances, yet they consistently attend school, participate in a rigorous learning environment and meet the expectations of the program. My students prove that if given the opportunity to excel, they can and will rise to the occasion.”

Fifteen of Montgomery’s students were recognized as Gateway Achievers by the Gateway to College National Network. Students include: Jose Ortiz Rivera from Hatboro-Horsham; Gustavo Ascencion from Norristown; Ne’Cole Casalena and Laura Krueger from Phoenixville; Brianna Gagliardi, Marcus Gordon and Anthony Romano from Pottsgrove; James Hanible from Upper Merion; Christopher Anderson, Shane Bowman, Jelani Crosby and William Dobnak from Upper Moreland; Shaquilla Anderson from WIB; and Meghan Benson and Emahnie Holmes from Wissahickon.

Fifteen of Montgomery's students were recognized as Gateway Achievers by the Gateway to College National Network.

Fifteen of Montgomery’s students were recognized as Gateway Achievers by the Gateway to College National Network.

The College also recognized spring Gateway students for their achievements.

William Dobnak, Upper Moreland, and Laura Krueger, Phoenixville, were recognized as Foundation (first term) Students of the Semester. They also earned the highest GPA among the College’s Gateway students along with Jelani Crosby, Upper Moreland.

Marcus Gordon, Pottsgrove, and Rachel Voltz, Upper Merion, were recognized as Transitioned (second term) Students of the Semester.

Perfect Attendance went to Shane Bowman, Upper Moreland; Anthony Romano, Pottsgrove; and Thomas Rosa, of Plymouth Meeting. Rosa was also recognized as Most Courageous, along with Paige Trump, Pottsgrove. Romano was recognized for Change of Heart, along with Jose Ortiz Rivera, Hatboro-Horsham.

Brianna Gagliardi, Pottsgrove, and Julian Richardson, WIB, earned Most Improved, while Amber Keyes, Norristown, and Faith Owens, Pottsgrove, earned Rising Star awards.

Additional awards included Perseverance, given to Nicole Snyder, Upper Moreland, and Dejah McMillan, Pottsgrove; and Most Determined, given to Gustavo Ascencion, Norristown, and Keara Hyden, Phoenixville.

Students begin the Gateway to College program with a Foundation semester, during which they take classes in reading, writing, math, and college skills as part of small learning communities. After successfully completing the Foundation term, participants transition into one of the College’s academic programs, earning college credits while completing high school requirements. Throughout the program, students are advised and mentored by Gateway Resource Specialists Lori Davidson and Esau Collins. They also actively engage in college and community service.

Partnering school districts include Boyertown, Cheltenham, Daniel Boone, Hatboro-Horsham, Norristown, Perkiomen Valley, Phoenixville, Pottsgrove, Pottstown, Souderton, Spring Ford, Upper Dublin, Upper Merion, Upper Moreland, Upper Perkiomen, Wissahickon and the Montgomery County Workforce Investment Board.

Watch the full graduation and awards ceremony below! Video produced by Matt Porter

2014 Commencement Creates ‘Digital Moment’ for Graduates

Graduates take selfies at the College's 2014 Commencement ceremony. Photos by John Welsh

Graduates take selfies at the College’s 2014 Commencement ceremony. Photo by John Welsh

by Alana J. Mauger

Montgomery County Community College’s class of 2014 made history on May 15, as graduates, faculty and guests participated in what may very well be the largest group of “selfie” photos taken simultaneously.

Dr. Celeste Schwartz addresses 2014 graduates. Photo by John Welsh

Dr. Celeste Schwartz addresses 2014 graduates.

Dr. Celeste Schwartz, alumna and Vice President for Information Technology and College Services, initiated the selfie during her Commencement keynote address, encouraging close to 5,000 graduates, faculty and guests to take and share selfies to commemorate the evening.

Shared with the hashtag #ThinkBigGrad to a variety of social media platforms, many of these photos are archived on the College’s Think Success blog and on  Pinterest.

Dr. Lee Bender shoots a confetti cannon following his speech, drawing applause from the crowd. Photo by John Welsh

Dr. Lee Bender shoots a confetti cannon following his speech, drawing applause from the crowd.

With a combined 90 years of service to MCCC, Dr. Schwartz along with Professor of Economics Dr. Lee Bender were selected as 2014 Commencement keynote speakers as part of the College’s 50th anniversary celebration. Together, they painted a picture of 1960s and imparted wisdom from lessons learned to graduates from the Class of 2014.

One of those graduates, Michelle Sikora, Lansdale, had the opportunity to share her story as the selected student commencement speaker. During her remarks, Sikora a single parent to a child with acute medical needs, shared the challenges of balancing coursework with doctor appointments and hospital visits.

Commencement student speaker & 2014 grad Michelle Sikora. Photo by John Welsh

Commencement student speaker & 2014 grad Michelle Sikora.

“Some trials are just a part of life. They are life’s pop quizzes; they are opportunities for growth and improvement, and they have rewards,” she shared. “We can benefit even from life’s toughest challenges by asking, ‘what can I learn from this experience? How can I approach this in a new way, and what can I change? And, most importantly, how can I use this experience to help others?’”

Graduating with a degree in Liberal Studies, Sikora will return to the College in the fall to pursue a degree in Nursing.

Sikora was one of 1,491 graduates from the class of 2014, who collectively earned 1,525 degrees and certificates. Included among these are a record 52 military veterans, who, for the first time, wore navy blue stoles embroidered with the words “Valor & Respect;” a record 340 students who completed their coursework at the College’s West Campus in Pottstown; 275 members of Phi Theta Kappa international honor society; 75 students with a grade point average (GPA) of 3.9 or higher; 35 international students from 17 different countries; a record 21 graduates from the College’s Honors Program; and 21 Mustangs student athletes.

Class of 2014 graduates range in aged from 17 to 81. Of note, 99 graduates began their college careers as dual enrollment students from 34 regional and cyber high schools.

Vice President for Academic Affairs & Provost Dr. Vicki Bastecki-Perez presents Jill Beccaris-Pescatore with the Pearlstine Award for Teaching Excellence.

Vice President for Academic Affairs & Provost Dr. Vicki Bastecki-Perez presents Jill Beccaris-Pescatore with the Pearlstine Award for Teaching Excellence. Photo by John Welsh

Graduates were not the only ones lauded for their accomplishments during the ceremony. Assistant Professor of Economics Jill Beccaris-Pescatore received the 2014 Pearlstine Award for Teaching Excellence. The award, given on alternating years with the Lindback Award for Teaching Excellence, is named in honor of founding Trustee Gladys Pearlstine and is presented to a faculty member who embodies the principles on which the College was founded and who is nominated his/her peers and students.

During the presentation, Beccaris-Pescatore, who has taught at the College since 2003, was recognized for using new media and current events to teach complex economic principles, as well as her energy and enthusiasm in the classroom and her participation in college activities. She is also an avid runner and has completed the Boston Marathon in each of the last two years.

Several dignitaries celebrated with the graduates, including Pennsylvania State Senator John Rafferty, Montgomery County Commissions Josh Shapiro and Bruce Castor, and members of the College’s Board of Trustees.  In addition to these, 19 alumni who graduated between 1968-1972 attended the ceremony to commemorate the College’s 50th anniversary.

Watch the Commencement Pre-Show, hosted by student Paige Murray and produced by Matt Porter.

2014 #ThinkBigGrad Selfies

Thanks to the graduates, faculty, staff, alumni, students, family, friends, who took #ThinkBigGrad selfies at Montgomery County Community College’s 2014 Commencement ceremony on May 15. And thank you to Dr. Celeste Schwartz for giving us an amazing “digital moment!” All public #ThinkBigGrad Instagram and Twitter pics are archived below!

Proud #classof2014 #thinkbiggrad #onehellofaride #keepitcoming

A photo posted by Christina Reice (@reicecup) on

#thinkbiggrad

A photo posted by 🌺 Ruth Martinez 🌺 (@ruthie0423) on

#ThinkBigGrad

A photo posted by Shanna (@shanna_watkins93) on

#thinkbiggrad @mccc

A photo posted by jillbecc (@jillbecc) on

#thinkbiggrad @takatdink

A photo posted by MelissaKerri🌻 (@melissakerri330) on

Graduation selfie #seldie #ThinkBigGrad #graduation #college #abouttime

A photo posted by Sarah Esbensen (@sarahhhh_baby) on

#thinkbiggrad @bugatti_brezina

A photo posted by Lauren Johnston🍀 (@lalauren_jxo) on

#ThinkBigGrad

A photo posted by Angel_Kris (@french_brownie) on

#ThinkBigGrad

A photo posted by @aeck25 on

#ThinkBigGrad

A photo posted by Kaleb Oden (@ezra7811) on

#thinkbiggrad

A photo posted by @micheleund on

Will and I graduated high school together and now college! Congrats Will! #thinkbiggrad #montco #class2014

A photo posted by Kelly Packer (@pictureperfect26) on

Early childhood education #thinkbiggrad #classof2014 #montco #phithetakappa #AA

A photo posted by ЅℋᎯℕℕᎾℕ ЅᏆℰᏇᎯℛᏆ (@shannonlynnx) on

Graduating!!!but first... Let me take a selfie! #thinkbiggrad #class2014selfieshot #professorsorders

A photo posted by Christina Reice (@reicecup) on

I did it! I graduated! 🎓🎉☺️ #ThinkBigGrad #montco #class2014

A photo posted by Kelly Packer (@pictureperfect26) on

All for her #thinkbiggrad

A photo posted by Destiny (@shortie2531) on

Okay, so @lyss916 got mad at tha last one, so here's the cute one. #cute #couple #2014 #grad #thinkbiggrad

A photo posted by Sean Harris (@sharrisonford) on

I'm so happy!! #thinkbiggrad #mc3 #mccc #montco

A photo posted by 🌺 Ruth Martinez 🌺 (@ruthie0423) on

OUR COMMENCEMENT SPEAKER TOLD US TO ALL TAKE A SELFIE AT THE SAME TIME #thinkbiggrad

A photo posted by Litzi (@litzilitzo) on

Repost from @shortie2531 via @igrepost_app: #thinkbiggrad

A photo posted by Montgomery County Comm College (@mcccpa) on

https://twitter.com/Devon_Carrow/status/467098080882737152

https://twitter.com/Devon_Carrow/status/467151834634014721

2014 Montgomery County Community College Graduates

A total of 1,491 students graduated from Montgomery County Community College with 1,525 associate’s degrees and certificates during the 47th Commencement ceremony on May 15 at the Central Campus, 340 DeKalb Pike, Blue Bell.

The 2014 graduates are listed by area of residence. 

Abington: Lauren Arcurio, Brittany Boggi, Gerard Bradley, David Canuso, Maria Chen, Charles Clarke, Samira Davis, Michael Durphy, Marla Fisher, Daniel Gamble, Michael Giampaolo, Derron Henderson, Virginia Hydock, Timothy Judge, Alison Kenny, Yeon-Seon Lee, Jessica Lowenstein, Yolanda McBride-Peoples, John McGrogan, Bonnie Rodgers, Billie Sherwood-Bakhshi, Kellie Suchinsky, Alyssa Taylor, Warren Tioxon, Patrick Tunney, Sage Vega, Vincent Viola

Agana, Guam: Vera Imburgia

Ambler: Teresa Arias, Carly Braca, Lisa Brown, Ethan Butson, Geraldine Canalley, Elizabeth Cannon, Kaitlyn Carr, Julie Cho, George Ciukurescu, Ryan Marie Conway, Abigail Drakely, Afeya Ebba, Rachel Federsel, Carlos Fontana, Ernestine Gibbs, Margaret Goldschmidt, Julian Greenberg, Eric Gustafson, Stephanie Hartman, Andrew Hill, Elizabeth Hood, Tyler Hopp, Stewart Jones, Kelly Kane, Stephen Kennedy, Daniel Kim, Amy Kolesnik, Olena Kravchenko, James Lu, Mary Grace Lux, Kelly Martin, Ryan McAlpine, Sandi Muli, Neil Naroznowski, Brandi Nelson, Galen Newsum, Aulyoung Nha, Juliette Pena, Brittini Pinyard, Stephanie Plunkett, Amber Pokorney, Katherine Pollins, Sean Reilley, Chelsea Rhoads, Jamie Richards, Brandon Sakelaridos, Alexandra Scalfaro, Keon-Woo Shim, Concetta Sloss, Kevin Solakian, John Stewart, Melisa Stoerrle, Matthew Swann, Shannon Toal, Stephen Tran, Ruschell Turner, Luciano Vecchione, Helen Webster, Meghan White, Sarah Wiley, Megan Yinh

Ardsley: Nikolaus Jarkowsky, Amanda Kida, Lynne Sweeney, Frederick Woodward

Atlanta, Ga.: Jonelle Green

Audubon: Maria Barone, Eric Cho, Megan Dodds, Lisa Durland, Theresa Errington, Caterina Fuhrmeister, Lauren Johnston, Nicole Kelly, Kelly Koniewicz, Brandon Law, Jennifer Nowak, Ray Portillo, Erin Walker, Tamara Wengel

Aurora: Danielle DeGroot

Austin, Texas: Cara Peterson

Bala Cynwyd: Helia Akbari, Michael Bernabo, Robert Brothers, Alton Carlson, Grace Dob, Nathan Horowitz, Jack Van Adelsberg

Bally: Adam Eshleman

Baltimore, Md.: Jessenia Sosa

Barto: Joseph Boyle, Alyssa Cochrane, Victoria Gaydos, Alison Kemp, Joanna Manthey, Ashley Marlowe, Tracey Twitty, Avery Wrubleski

Bechtelsville: Ashley Dittman, Travis Erb, Robert Mihalcik, Anthony Petrecz, Sarah Royer, Dana Rubright, Amanda Updegrove, Matthew Wilkins

Belmont Hill: Carlo Baffa

Bensalem: Brian Gadinski, Stacy Hetrick

Bernville: Katie Williams

Birdsboro: Matthew Covert, Michael Hanson, Keimer Lessig, Keri Mohn, Melanie Mungin, Mark Shafer, Amber West, Anne Witman

Blandon: Dawn Pavlick

Blue Bell: Corinne Bennink, Meti Berki, Elizabeth Beugless, Evan Brooke, John Burton, Steven Byrd, Colin Conway, Elisheba Davis, Caitlin Diehl, Sarah Frank, Connor Freas, Todd Galczyk, Kimberly Hubner, Margaret Interrante, Robert Irvine, Hakmat Issa, Adward Kim, Fatima Leon, Lorin Logreco, Donna Mastrangelo, Gerard McGeary, Matthew O’Brien, James O’Callaghan, Maria Perez-Paredes, Drew Petko, Margaret Petz, Jennifer Porter, Hailey Reinbold, Harris Risell, Corin Roman, Danielle Ruhren, Warren Stimpson

Boyertown: Carol Bendinsky, Brandon Burns, Erica Churchill, Edward Ciaciak, Jenna Dittman, Tara Engle, Nicole Engle, Lynn Evan, Derek Favinger, Shaun Freimann, Michele Goncus, Kathleen Heimbach, Colleen Huggens, Hilda Hynes, Kaitlyn Kline, Jeanette Kovach, Deborah McClennen, John McKinnon, Glenn Mertz, Bryan Mourar, Kenneth Nicolosi, Zachary Parsons, Thomas Schiel, Jessica Schwartz, Megyn Stauffer, Debra Vroman, Sydney Wagner, Robert Wagner, Vicki Zearfoss, Paula Ziegler

Breinigsville: Lindsay Jacobsen

Bridgeport: Meriana Barsoum, Catherine Bidwell, Megan Collins, Stephen Corbin, Michael Dowling, Gayle Flaer, Patricia Gahm, Ryan Godman, Kaitlyn Groarke, Ryan Hoy, Andrew Milke, Adrianna Pierson, Krzystna Reigel, Dylan Reimer, Jose Santiago, Julio Trejo, Shane VanBuskirk, Amy Volpe, Robert Yetter

Bryn Athyn: Austin Rose

Burlington: William Thompson

Cedars: Vincent Pupillo

Chalfont: Anna-Larissa Boehm, Denean Lear, Christopher Moore, Saranya Muhunthan, Dennis Parker, Matthew Perozze

Champaign, Ill.: Lisa Burgener

Cheltenham: Amie Albertus, Charlette Allen, Brian Brown, Christopher Brutschea, Leland Cohen, Jayme Crescenzo, Byron Drayton, Brian Hipwell, Kathryn Jury, David Kauffman, Christina Klein, Katarina Lovinfosse, Stephanie Martinez, Katie McClurg, Roberto Melecio, Brendan Neyer, John Petiu, Adrienne Reynolds, Danielle Ruch, Elizabeth Schroeder, Richard Sinclair, Andre Wright

Chester: Nicole Armstrong-Jackson, Kristin Butler

Chester Springs: Billie Wagner

Churchville: Pamela Kerr

Coatesville: Sanjay Anand, Mae-Lene Miller

Collegeville: Laura Allen, Stephanie Angelucci, Melanie Angelucci, William Arthur, Alessia Battaglia, Rebecca Beattie, Michael Bensch, Christopher Blegen, Corey Briddes, Amanda Bryan, Catherine Callahan, Melissa Catalano, Lauren Cerino, Chris Connor, Johanna Contreras, Cortney Coutreyer-Thornton, Grace Ann Coyle, Margaret Cusmina, Jessica Day, Joline De Jong, Nicholas Deasy, Suzanne Dirusso, Alison Flood, Brian Focht, James Fulop, Ruth Gallus, Brandi George, Denise Giandonato-Paniconi, Melony Graham, Jennifer Groff, Jena Hanebury, Sean Hannon, Stephen Hershey, Nicole Hiller, Staci Hoffman, Dana Hoyer, Derrick Johnson Jr., Christopher Kahn, Jessica Kelly, Ryan Knab, Kimberly Krizovensky, Jamie Lakernick, Shelley Lashley, Mark Laskaris, Roberta Lee, Kenneth Vincent Lopez, Victoria Lorinc, Joseph Markley, Shaun Martin, Anthony Masciantonio, Willie Mathis, Timothy Mattiola, Ashley McCarty, Taylor McGoldrick, Jeanette Mizell, Stacey Murray, Denise Naylor, Patty Nazzaro, Roger Neves, Richard Nice, Elise Nielsen, Albert Pickles, Kevin Pierro, Kelly Preletz, Brianna Ramalho, Rachel Rosado, Clayton Russell, Michele Sapovits, William Seiler, John Sharkey, Tenira Smith, Hannah Smith, Patricia Tabor, Julia Tasca, Angela Thress, Nicholas Vergara, Aaron White, Megan Wiglusz, Robert Winkelman, Shiqiu Zhang

Collingdale: Mark Bonn

Colmar: Nancy Hayes-Vance, Yoon Kim, David Knoble, Melissa Krissinger, Jessica Singer, Erica Tolton

Colorado Springs, Colo.: Shaylyn Hughes 

Conshohocken: Denise Abel, Michel Amabile, Tina Ambs, Jose Ayala, James Baskwill, Kristen Collins, Kimberly Cuthbertson, Aprille Darang, Ashley Davis, Gabriella Difulvio, Eric Giannone, Allison Giannone, Brandy Hambrick, Sarah Hudson, Heather Jaramillo, Sara Kijak, Jessica Lehman, Richard Lewis, Ali Mohammed, William Morgan, Kevin Mscisz, Matthew Murray, Christine Muszynski, Nicholas O’Connor, Kelly Packer, Erin Park, Kirby Pierce, Joshua Reinard, Joseph Santino, Alexa Santy, Chanyang Seo, Amber Stoddard, Elwood Swanson, Bradley Wanner, Alicia Whitley, Andrea Williams

Creamery: Abigail Reff

Denver: Stacia Fader

Devon: Alison Pikalyuk, Marija Skachko

Douglassville: Kaleigh Barron, Courtney Bartman, Williamjob Canlas, Linda Cuesta, Katherine Johnson, Emily Killgore, Matthew Marvel, Charles Mearhoff, Emily Parese, Anthony Rogers, Raeann Schoudt, Nicollette Smith

Downingtown: Vincent Anzideo, Simona Salas

Doylestown: Joshua McLaughlin, Phillip Parenti

Dresher: Jacqueline-Eyvonne Allen, Steven Aller, Annette Barwis, Jonathan Bond, Michael Carr, Catherine Cashman, Jun Choe, Jennifer Grossman, Mallory Landau, Ethan Mintz, Brett Schmuckler, Marla Simon, Kelly Tascarella

Eagleville: Philip Billetta, Ashley Bucci, Georgia Costa, Melanie Hansell, Jessica Hayes, Maria Linder, Michele Marinari, Dominque Owens-Pinkney, Patricia Piazza, Elizabeth Quiroz, Jessica Roberts, Rebecca Skeens

East Greenville: Vincent Decaro, Mercedes Dietrich, Andrea Esterline, Anna Folk, Nicoll Lezano, Michele May, Arielle Miller, Nicole Phillips, Craig Pyndinski, Ianna Rementer, Kassie Remick, Colleen Sodon, Benjamin Waltenbaugh, Logan Wells

East Norriton: April Ash, Patrick Banus, Stephanie Desimone, Daniela Figueroa, Holly Fitzsimmons, Steven Imossi, Jessica Jackson, Agnieszka Jeleniewska, Ryan Kelly, Michael Matusheski, Kathleen Maxwell, Philene Moore, Christopher Nahrgang, Rebecca Oaks, Benjamin Perry, Eric Porter, Melanie Schappell, Chantelle Silverio, Richard Villoso

Easton: Suzanne Fee, Julia Onesti

East Stroudsburg: Terrence Childs

Elkins Park: Octavia Beyah, Dylan Blazick, Alexander Borda, Richard Caruso, William Conwell, Lovell Faison, Jillian Hannigan, John Heary, Andrew Heller, Ledny Joseph, Hayley Leather, Erika Lewis, Jacqueline Neely, Zhanna Panchuk, Monica Salvatore, Betsy Taing, Lekeisha Thomas-Fullwood, Andrew Tucker, Alexander Van, Alla Voronova, Corina Warfield, Antonieo Wright

Elverson: Cody Calhoun, Megan Kane, Rebecca Stevens

Erdenheim: Andrew Davis, John Harkins, Melissa Marano, Jeffrey McGuth, Joseph Weitzman

Fleetwood: Amy Bireley, Megan Young

Flourtown: Chantel Adams, James Belcher, Maureen Duffy, Charles Fulforth, Nathaniel Grossman, Christopher Manning, Jeffrey Michael, Chris Ann Reilly, Alyssa Romano

Fort Washington: Miriam Basta, Francesco Basta, Maura Ellinger, Farida Ferradji, Katherine Hallman, Kristen Hiltwine, Jonathan Hurd, John Toner, Ian Webber, Marlena Wojnar, Steven Young

Fort Wayne: Htoo Doh

Frazer: Jessica Strano

Garnet Valley: Herbert Simmons

Gilbertsville: Travis Acree, Patricia Antonelli, Bassem Attalla, Dina Attalla, Kaitlynn Bortz, Nicholas Brezina, Rachel Brnilovich, Jordan Dimedio, Megan Duncan, Serena Dunlap, Kirstin Ervin, Lisa Evans, Dana Gaffney, Amanda Garges, Kelly Harper, Ashley Hawksworth, Robert Hayes, Piper Hodges, Andrew Hollowell, Lynne Honsberger, Emily Janzow, Joseph Jaworski, Kelly Kozell, Jaime Krauss, Mandy Maphosa, Luis Maradiaga, Patricia Marcus, Brooke Martin, Natasha Dawn Martin, Jacquelyn McCone, John McDonald, Donald McHenry, John McKillip, Kyle Merkel, Christopher Miller, Charlene Pennington, Michael Pinto, Barbara Porter, Aaron Rens, Amanda Stimmler, Diane VanDyke, Keisha Vining, Laura Vining, Cara Wassiluk, Nathan Waterman, Brittney Watson, Jason Wood, Justin Wysong, Azelin Zangrilli

Gladwyne: Andrew Hayman, Caroline Ozeroff

Glenolden: David Jordan

Glenside: Aynye Adams, Moeez Ahmed, Erica Aiken, Jillian Alcorn, Ahmad Beckett, Brigitte Britt, Betty Brown, Abigail Brown, Maurin Brown, Salvatore Calderone, Victoria Clark, Lucy Diwatsang, Lobsang Diwatsang, Thomas Gallen, Daniel Garcia, Maureen Gillespie, Mark Hood, William Kee, Hayley Kepner, Regina Kuehrmann, Otto Kuehrmann, Michael Mauer, Christopher McCaffrey, Matthew McHale, Jason Mish, Joseph Mitros, Kristen Moore, Dushan Munasinghe, Margaret Nolan, Megan O’Neill, Samantha Ortolani, Nicole Panetta, Andrew Parkinson, Valdy Pierre, Kelly Price, Sherri Razaq-Thiers, Vickie Scott-Barber, Mark Sudell, Stephen Suder, Kathleen Sullivan, Dana Washington, Christian Weigand, Linda Williams, Gregory Yanosh, Ji Mok Yeom

Graterford: Frederick Page, Alan Presbury

Green Lane: Rebecca Atz, Ryland Beck, Erin Coffey, Megan Ganter, Galen Graham, Kira Greene, Tyler Grubb, Jennifer Hunsberger, Ryan Landis, Jared Little, Nathalie Schrank, Jonathan Sine, Carla Sirak, Joseph Wood, Nicholas Wright

Gulph Mills: John Stanish, Nicola Stultz-Miller

Gwynedd: Yvonne Hellams

Gwynedd Valley: Michael Gillespie, Jamie Weiss

Harleysville: Simeon Acker, Lynette Angstadt, Shakiyra Baker, Michelle Barrett, Bridget Barrett, Thomas Beck, Andrew Berger, Becca Bilofsky, Lauren Calzonetti, Rebecca Chui, Whitni Cole, Marisa Conway, Tegan Crombie, Patrick Davis, Marlene Derstine, Darshana Desai, Diane Doman, Ian Duckman, Christine Dudek, Helen Duong, Elise Durling, Christopher Eppley, Valerie Ferrin, Matthew Forstater, Diane Francis, Esther Frustino, Christopher Gerhart, Tara Grater, Katie Greiner, Joshua Guntz, Brooke Harvey, Cherise Holmes, Shaun Honts, Michael Hurst, Syeda Hussain, Justin Johnson, Karen Katz, Tiffany Knechel, Mikaela Kostrubiak, Jared Landis, Tristan Landis, Cody Leatherman, Benjamin Litman, Erin Masters, Bryan McCollum, Jennifer McDyer, Scott McMaster, Thomas Mergen, Lauren Mergen, Jessica Metzger, Constance Mininger, Connie Muhl, Cody Mullen, Shane Murphy, Sadiyah Noel, Erik Otterbach, Meeraben Patel, Matthew Petrov, Marco Prado, Meredith Reed, Kirsten Roberts, Nicholas Rosato, Cynthia Rushton, Kevin Samples, Jennifer Schamerhorn, Michael Schmidt, Sarah Sharkey, Kayla Smith, Andrea Thomas, Tan Tran, Tyler Vandegrift, Anna Walton, Anita Whitlinger, Sarah Wunderlich, Jordan Zdon 

Hatboro: Samantha Ashton, Susan Betron, Julian Bradley, Tim Bright, Shana Bright, Martin Cassidy, Steven Catherman, David Connelly, Anna Courter, Patricia Coyle, Diane Creighton, Minelle Delos Trinos, Justin Emrich, James Foley, Adam Gaston, Matthew Goldstein, Jenna Gould, Julia Heenan, Carolyn Hockenbury, Amanda Jones, Joseph Kalinoski, Deborah Kelley, Timothy Kistner, Luann Kittredge, James Klein, Pamela Kopack, Jonathan Leopold, Steven Lopresti, Kiernan Macrone, Ruth Martinez de Jesus, Rachel Meyers, Emily Naimo, Tatiana Ohrenich, Shawn O’Leary, Jennifer Onderko, Melissa Pulli, Nicholas Rosa, Minseon Seong, Chris Showaker, Dean Simonsen, Kimberly Stein, Alaina Swinand, Joseph Szerlag, Michelle Taplar, Karen Walker, Frederic Zajac

Hatfield: Mina Agauiby, Andrew Begley, Matthew Bell, Michael Bergin, Elizabeth Bevington, Chris Boyce, Bethany Bristow, Md Chowdhury, Yajaira Cisneros, Amanda Denton, Margaret DiNunzio, Amanda Draper, James Elsasser, Timothy Elsasser, Katelyn Farrall, MacKenzie Fitzpatrick, Hiliary Floczak, Karl Floczak, Jessica Gallagher, Basheer Garas, Matthew Gerhart, Tamika Holland, Rachel Hughes, Miyon Kim, Sung Kim, Kevin Landes, Alexander Lee, Jeemin Lee, Nathan Leslie, Rosio Lopez, Luis Lopez, Chris Luckey, Carol MacDonald, Phung Mai, Katie Mascaro, Kevin McGuriman, Bernice Ndimantang, Elizabeth Nelson, Anh Nguyen, Ashley Paskill, Nilam Patel, Viraj Patel, Chetnaben Patel, Pinal Patel, Swapnil Ray, John Rodriguez, Cody Schnable, Matthew Sedall, Matthew Senske, Forrest Setzer, Amanda Smolcynski, Cristina Stevens, Alicia Stoler, Jennie Taylor, Pauline Tiblis, Kelly Vuong, Amy Wagner, Andrea Wagner, Katelyn Will, Daniel Wolfle, Vincent Yarnell, Kristen Young, June Young

Hereford: Charles DeSautel, Tara Gilbert, Veronica Saucedo, Renee Woodard

Horsham: Anthony Baker, Timothy Brown, Kevin Callaghan, Kevin Cawley, Jeffrey Cole, Danielle Cole, Christopher Covollo, Taylor Cummings, Danielle Curran, Michael D’Amico, Adarian Eastman, Justin Edwards, Kasey Ehrgott, Valerie Esposito, Brenton Ferris, Khadijah Graves, Victoria Greco, Carl Greer, Elizabeth Halpine, Daniel Hammer, Jennifer Hayes, Tarin Hevener, Cassandra Holloway, Danielle Karlson, Michael Maag, Lucas Manero, Stephanie Matthews, Josalyne McCourt, Kieran McDonnell, Chelsea Odeitus, Joseph Palmeri, Katherine Peffall, David Reedel, Nathaniel Roberts, Kevin Romanoli, Evan Rostron, Nicole Ruggierio, Stephen Ryan, Stacey Sano, Yanae Savage, Eun Shim, John Sirianni, Charles Stafford, Kara Stevens, Janine Truppay, Erin Watson, Cassandra West, Tenise Whiteside, Stephanie Zulewski

Hulmeville: Jonathan Mall

Huntingdon Valley: Jason Bae, Eddie Castor, Avery Cleff, Lyudmila Dyachenko, John Givnish, Dorothy Glasgow, Staci Loeffel, Nisha Mathew, LuAnn McKenna, Julianne Mosca, Anthony Nigro, Christopher Smith, Karl Steck, Ryan Wojciechowicz, Amy Wolbransky, Evan Zimmermann

Huntington Valley: Lawrence Grech, Ginamarie Meyers, Stephen Specht

Jamison: Michele Traurig

Jeffersonville: Barbara Jack, Emily Rodenbaugh

Jenkintown: Jennifer Adams, Christopher Artur, Lanier Bailey, Min Cho, Collin Farrell, Walter Flores, Michael Gabage, Courtney Haverkamp, Wei Jiang, William Meckel, Charles O’Brien, Angelo Pfaff, Bria Sarden, Lynn Siwek, Kimberly Spruill, Briana Stanton, Karl Stout, Colin Tracey

King of Prussia: Mariam Alamgir, Warda Alamgir, Diego Anteparra, Liana Benjamin, Shannon Boyle, Mary Buchwald, John Buford, Katherine Carpio, Danielle D’Aloia, Laura Evans, Francis Genuardi, Alyssa Goodman, Andrew Grace, Rose Hinkle, Sarah Hosgood, Stephanie Isaac, Anita Isaac, Deanna Kim, Andrew MacBride, Doungpone Madow, Rebecca Martin, Taylor McDermott, Richard Meneses, Amanda Metricarti, Matthew Murphy, Milan Patel, Chitrangi Patel, Chintan Patel, Carmen Pavon, Michael Popowicz, Basit Rasool, Mary Renner, Mark Schinski, Edward Schryver, Jacob Sedgwick, Hye Seon, Jonathan Spector, Karn Sukararuji, Damian Szerszen, Jordan Verni, Rachel Wilhelm, Seth Witonsky

Kulspville: Meghan Cleary

Lafayette Hill: Susan Falvey, Daniel Koleda, Michaela Lapent, Amanda McBride, Bandana Moktan, Nicolina Passanante, Colin Rogerson, Daria Shafie, Carly Zawislak, Stephanie Zygmont

Lake Mary, Fla.: John Kairis

Lancaster: Jordan Busansky, Mallory Murphy

Lansdale: Joseph Adamski, Eliasaf Addison, Elizabeth Amatelli, Nehla Amin, Celeste Anlas, Olivia Arellano, Natalie Arzberger, Rony Aslam, Jenarosa Auriemma, Magdalena Bartnikowska, Lubna Begum, Saira Begume, Lynda Benali, Mourad Bensmail, Jeffrey Berest, Linda Blattner, Ryan Bogas, Bethany Bonner, Kirsten Bourdon, Richard Brady, Gregory Bruno, Amber Buehrle, Ha Byun, Trisha Calhoun, Noelle Carney, Mark Carter, Eduardo Cavallin, Joanna Chancellor, Abu Chowdhury, Julie Ciabattoni, Melissa Clark, Daniel Corrado, Brittany Cottone, Kyle Crowell, Sylvia Czoch, Joshua Davis, Kristina Davis, Ruth Degraffenreidt, Ashley Devlin, Joseph Diorio, Thao Do, Marisa Dormer, Christopher Doyle, Alyssa Dresch, Li Ming Du, Sarah Esbensen, Elizabeth Fabick, Kristen Farmer, Regina Faustine, Joanne Fennimore, Michael Fetter, Lindsey Finn, Samadhi Fisher, Jaclyn Foreman, John Frost, Aram Frounjian, Victoria Frunzi, Carolyn Greenleaf, Taylor Gruszka, Jisun Ha, Chelsea Hallas, Terrell Hamilton, Matthew Handwerk, Carol Hankey, Sarah Hannings, Kristina Harmon, Megan Heins, Shenai Henry, Candace Herber, Jason Higgins, Patrick Higgins, Stephanie Hoover, Ronald Housenick, Christopher Howe, Fabrice Huby, Thanh Huynh, Jaclyn Irvin, Devante Isaacs, Anna Javorka, Anastasia Johnson, Seong Hee Jun, Youbin Kang, Wommahani Kawsar, William Keech, Yeo Jung Kim, Hye Kim, Sung Kim, Anna Kim, Moon Kim, Robert Kohlbus, Amy Kolsky, Aurelie Ky, Kasandra Lambrau, Francisco Lara-Romero, Franklin Lee, Thomas Leeland, Devon Leopold, Tiffany Leslie, David Leslie, Roxana Levito, Eric Lewandowski, Danielle Lillo, Brittany Lim, G. Linberg,Yansheng Liu, Michael Long, Adam Long, Jennifer Lundy, Daisy Mackey, Bethany Malamut, Christopher Mamrol, Susan Mangino, Catherine Matos, Matthew May, Christopher McBreen, Joann McDonald, Jessica McGinley, Elizabeth McGlinn, Ryan McGlinn, Ashley McMichael, Mary Mellow, Farhad Miah, Timofey Mikityuk, Sarah Minehart, Chase Minihan, Patrick Moyer, Samuel Narvaez, Rajesh Nath, Hien Nguyen, Leah Niezgoda, Matthew Nitchke, Courtney Ockershausen, Kelsey O’Gara, Jenna O’Hara, Patricia O’Malley, James O’Mara, Linda Owarzani, Rosa Palacios-Romero, Hyunjin Park, Abbey Pasquale, Shreya Patel, Swetaben Patel, Damini Patidar, Upton Peart-Cawley, Michael Pelna, Leeanne Pennegar, Ingrid Phelps, John Pickersgill, Siasquia Pierre, Jacquelyn Pileggi, Brandy Pitman, Justyna Pogoda, Yuliya Polanuyer, Erica Prechtl, Yuqin Qian, Patrick Reckner, Patrick Regan, Steven Regul, Schelli Robinson, Antonio Russo, Timothy Ryan, Andrew Sade, Eileen Scerati, Shanjida Sharna, Michael Shea, Patrick Sheehan, Dexter Shy, Asma Siddika, Michelle Sikora, Jeffery Smallwood, Margaret Steinbacher, Tessa Stepa, Karen Stovall, Nahid Sultana, Brianna Suppi, Albert Swartz, Surya Syal, Cody Thomson, Brian Trzeciak, Jennifer Tucker, Shanna Turner-Casey, Paula van den Heuvel, Patrick Waldenberger, Jasmine Warren, Shanna Watkins, Andrew Wells, Alyson Wernly, Allison Wert, Tyrone Whiteside, Julianne Williams, Robert Winslow, Nicole Yaramishyn, Anthony Yeager, Brian Zollo

Laverock: Jessica Franklin

Lawnside, N.J.: Wilma Hines

Lederach: Colleen Ferguson, Marybeth Myers

Leesport: Lauryn Bushy

Lehigh Acres: Lee Szymanski

Lester: Brett Meyer

Levittown: Kaley Bradshaw, Lindsey Vickery

Limerick: Sean Bickel, Jessica Difrancesco, Morgan Hawk, Seth Howard, Shauna Joyce, Janette Judge, Sarah Katein, Shanae Roberts, Michael Sherman, Renee Wachter

Line Lexington: Michael Forte

Linfield: Linda Bowles, Casey Hennessey, Donna Reagan

Louisville, Ky.: Taylor Kasper

Lower Gwynedd: Kimberly Bernstein, Daniel Gonzalez, Maria Picciotti, Sean Smith

Macungie: Nicholas Metzger

Malvern: Izabella Nagy

Maple Glen: Ross Borochaner, Yeong Eun Han, Debra Kim, Kristen Sokalski, Hillary Wagner

Meadowbrook: David Nederostek, Brionna Wright

Media: Liliya Kostyukov, Lynn Oliver

Melrose Park: Alexandra Bozzi, Brenda James, Jeremie Marquis

Millerstown: Mark Achenbach

Mohnton: Nicole Skipper

Mont Clare: Denise Davis, Ofeliya Kalaydzhyan

Morgantown: William Carter, Tyler Maxwell

Mount Laurel, N.J.: William Upham

Mullica Hill, N.J.: Donna Sulvetta-Student

Myrtle Beach, S.C.: Timothy Perkins

Narberth: Lia Grauch, Timothy Groves, Vanessa Plunkett

New Berlinville: Briana Hartline

Newtown: Renata Miskeviciute

Newtown Square: Desiree Adore, Vahe Frounjian

Norristown: Davon Allen, Marie Alliance, Kareem Ansari, Justin Athens, Danny Avery, Pa Alimamy Bangura, Ashley Barainyak, Margaret Bean, Rosemarie Becht, Marcia Benjamin, Alison Bergey, Bradley Berzins, Jennifer Blischok, Steven Bloomer, Jaime Bolognese, Shelley Briscoe, Sasha Buddle, Luca Burroughs, Charles Canessa, Brett Cappelli, John Carroll, Jennifer Cassano, Thomas Cassey, Haris-Ali Choudhry, Kiera Clary, Nicholas Colangelo, Justina Coleman, John Coles, Christine Connerton, Erin Cooper, Raymond Cravetz, Amy Crossland, Damon D’Amore, Kelly Davis, Kenneth Delbridge, Stephanie Disque, Khoa Doan, Leah Evanik, Joseph Gambone, Prerna Ganguli, Christmarie Gonzales, Michelle Gonzalez, Seth Gordon, Carlos Gordon, Daisy Grabowski, Dennis Gravinese, Jessica Guinyard, Wesley Hamilton, Shelina Harris, Shamika Hartwell, Kenneth Hayse, Carol Hedgepeth-Avery, Dianne Henning, Jackie Hill, Cashae Hinton, Adam Holstein, Christina Holt, Rebecca Hoy, Robert Hunt, John Iorio, Joffre Jaramillo, Christopher Jaramillo, Mia Jardine, Se-Jin Jeong, Enique Johnson, Victoria Jones, Christopher Jorden, Justin Juner, Lisa Kalinovski, Julian Kelly, Jacques Laguerre, James Lee, Dianne Licwinko, Alyssa Longobardi, Brian Lyness, Virginia Martinez, Jazmene Mayo, Ashley McKeever, Jamie Miller, Linda Milligan, Alfredo Montes, Brianna Musselman, Christina Myers, Charles Newman, Nhat-Y Nguyen, James Nguyen, Sarah Nyberg, Kristen Oliver, Alesia Palmer, Patricia Pass, Calvin Peterson, Amanda Petrillo, Stephanie Pierce, Lauresia Rambo, Simeon Reynolds, Renee Richardson, Lakiesha Richet, Viridiana Rojas, Lisa Salamone, Kevin Santoni, Steven Schrack, Nicole Scoma, Francis Sejda, Linda Sheppard, Susan Shirey, Nie Sowell, Marisa Spera, Rocio Spezia-Tamain, Rebecca Stern, Briana Stinson, Patrick Sullivan, Jessica Sweeney, Tina Swingle, David Tatasciore, Tabitha Thompson, Anayeli Trejo, Chinonyerem Ubah, Chelsea Uhrich, Alyssa Vargas, Charles Wadsworth, Kelly Walker, Tzuyun Wang, Karl Watkins, Ryan Wellcome, Theresa Wesley, Brendan White, Scott Whitley, Daisha Williams, Jaeson Williams, Marquel Willis, Jeffrey Wilson, Timothy Wirth, Kayla Witherite, Daniel Yoo, Ying Zhang, Cortney Ziegler, Robyn Ziegler

North Hills: Gabrielle Petriccione

North Wales: Jennifer Acciavatti, Xiomara Bachmann, Jennifer Bell, Chelsea Bourdon, Shannon Bouvia, Lindsey Brady, Haley Budnick, Gina Celano, Galin Cha, Awais Chaudhary, Adam Christian, Lydia Crush, Natalie Dawson, Jaclyn Dicicco, Heather Dickinson, Danielle Dimezza, Paige Eberharter, David Ettorre, Alana Ferguson, Tyler Flagler, Brynne Gallagher, Erika Gale Gepilano, Ashley Gerhart, Christopher Givigliano, Christopher Harper, Christina Henry, Soojung Hong, Danielle Hoos, Susan Huttlin, Sharif Ismaeil, Miriam Jacobson, Rebekah Jacobson, Bruce Jones, Samantha Kehoe, Soyoun Kim, Baiho Kim, Alicia Klucsarits, Vanessa Lamar, Hoon Lee, Salvatore Lombardo, Philip Masturzo, Evalee McBean, Jessica Mendoza, Michael Naccarelli, Andrea Nothwehr, Henry Oestreich, Rachel Older, Elad Orenstein, Roel Orong, Jiyoon Park, Teresa Perotti, Jennifer Pilong, Jessica Reed, Tammy Reid, Sarah Reider, Laura Reina Navarrete, Nicole Revitsky, Francis Serrao, Hee Eun Sohn, Key Hun Song, Ashley Speck, Robert Stieger, Matthew Tartaglia, Emily Walichnowski, Grace Yum, Charles Ziegenfus

Oakford: Angelina Wehlau

Oaks: Michal-Ann Sapp, Julie Wood

Oreland: Mary Brierley, Carleen Burns, Sean Crist, Helene Fink, Edward Halligan, Thomas Hungerford, Melanie Kline, Samantha Munn, Brittany Nolen, Danielle Sargrad, Nicole Scutti, Kevin Siebert

Orlando, Fla.: Raiyomond Irani

Oxford: Timothy Smyth

Palm: Nathan Kilbride

Paoli: Bryce Stevens

Parkerford: Taylor Shultz

Parkesburg: Nathan Perry

Penllyn: Brian Thomas

Penndel: Lorenza Ritossa

Pennsauken, N.J.: Joseph Rintye

Pennsburg: Ryan Beeco, Deana Bittenbender, Alyssa Bretz, Brittany Burns, Brian Christy, Jennifer Fino, Ashley Freed, Rysa Gagliano, Kathleen Galbavy, Elizabeth Keegan, Catherine Kile, Theresa Lockhoff, Stephanie Marsh, Margaretta Poku-Adjei, Joshua Potucek, Ashley Rozwadowski, Kelly Sally, Benjamin Scott, Shana Sicilia, Tonya Skoda, Morgan Slack, Christopher Steckhouse, Melanie Wolf, Ryan Ziegler

Penn Valley: Leonard Bazemore, Anna Tichtchenko

Perkasie: Jessica Denson, Daiana Fagundes, Matthew Moritz, Chelsea Penn

Perkiomenville: Jesse Alberts, Lauren Cassel, Merissa DiMino, Joanna Docherty, Christopher Gardan, Kristine Jones, Josephine Lutz-Rae, Jade Munro, Lois Pettigrew, Audra Rose, Justin Walters, Meghan Whiteley

Philadelphia: Ismail Al-Haneef, Eileen Ayers, Derek Bailey, Dominique Bell, Leanna Billings, Rasheeda Brennan, Sharita Bryant, Kerrie Cannon, Amy Chan, Philly Chan, Sunghee Cho, Jenna Clay, Cheryl Clements, Julia Crawford, Destiny De Sandro, Kahlil Flowers, Bria Fountain, Scott Gallagher, Charmaine Gladden, Charmeas Headen, Ayman Helmi, Lindette Hendricks, Nicole Jeffries, Elizabeth Jones, Vernell King, Shirlene Kirk, Christina Koller, Marvin Kroma, Lauren Lavelle, Jason Lee, Irina Lucas, Megan Luetz, Jason Maffucci, Pauline Majka, Lorianne Malagesi, Daniel McGinn, Daniel Nardi, Thinh Nguyen, Clement Okyne, Lacoye Pace, Erica Palmer, Jamielynn Paul, Amanda Pliszka, Alan Poindexter, Koran Prince, Julien Purnell, Patrick Quinn, Antionette Reed, Mary Reynolds, Shannon Rice, Gerald Ross, Victoria Rozier, Andrea Saldutti, Peter Sandeen, Alexandra Seltzer, Seyed Shams, Adam Silver, Patrina Smith, Ryan Sowisdral, James Spieker, Robert Thomas, Liby Thomas, Maurita Thorpe, Brianna Ward, Sharon Weeks, Tyheerah White, Jah’lil Williams, David Wood

Phoenixville: Mellissa Baggoo, Briana Bell, Megan Booth, Heather Brown, Sarah Brown, Kevin Burke, Caitlin Burton, Paul Celentano, Nicollette Debiasio, Vincent Defelice, Danielle Degideo, Michelle Demas, Amanda Dioszeghy, Damian Disiro, Sarah Divesta, Lani Eberhart, Terry Fitts, Christina Fusco, Bryana Gates, Jesus Govea, Elizabeth Gregory, Paul Gretzer, Rachel Harbon, Adria Henry, Hannah Keogh, Staci Kovach, Carl LaPorte, Tamika Lear, Maureen O’Neill, Amanda Pletcher, Nicholas Roccaro, Lili Shen, James Simko, Sara Szczecinski, Jackie Lynn Taylor, Amanda Turner, Robert Werner, David Wiesinger, Brian Wilfong, Elizabeth Wray

Pipersville: Emily Litwin

Pitman, N.J.: Anna Pappas, Anthony Tran

Plymouth Meeting: Jonathan Awot, Mark Black, Patricia Carter, Christopher Conicello, Dillon Cossey, Ashley Costa, Eric Denczi, Tu Dinh, Christina Dragone, Amy Ecklund, Lucas Flocco, Sareen Garabedian, Briana Granese, Michael Guarini, Joseph Harclerode, Kayla Hodges, Christian Jenkins, Susan King, Jennifer Kopsie, Jane McCullough, Christina Morgan, Diane Pacifico, Mixaben Patel, Daniel Patel, Tina Phu, Melissa Rodier, Rachel Ronan, Anthony Rose, Rachel Sciarillo, Taylor Sejda, Amanda Sinon, Peter Stevenson, Diana Stilley, Matthew Taormina, Christina Taormina, Dorell Van Buren, Ashley Waldman, Daniel Wilson, Michelle Won

Pottstown: Kathleen Albertson, Jeni Alexander, Anthony Alfano, Laurie Andes, Matthew Ayres, Adebimpe Babalola, Dana Barnes, Sandra Bartha, Christopher Basch, Karen Beckham, Sharon Benson, Samantha Boatman, Laura Bortner, Ryan Branagh, Kevin Brenen, Crystal Brickner, Anthony Bruni, Kevin Burks, Ashley Burns, Quanzella Butler, Michael Campbell, Tilisha Carter, Tiffany Carter, Josephine Chiarello, Kenneth Clark, Rose Collar, Phyllis Cooper, Amanda Cope, Anisah Covington, Christine Crock, Sofie Cruz, Christine Davis, Sean Day, Victoria Deering, Louis Dejohn, Erin Dicesare, Greg Distajo, Marlena Dolenti, Meghan Dollarton, Jennifer Doukas, Michael Eggers, Cranston Erby, Matthew Eshelman, Jennifer Freese, Justin Fritz, Michelle Fry, Abigail Galloway, Janaya Geiger, Bruce Geisler, Naseer Gibbs, Leyna Gilleland, Shauna Glenn, Sarah Golden, Krystal Grande, Richard Gray, Laina Grieco, Christina Hall, Jannie Harrison, Aaron Hart, Elizabeth Hawkins, Parris Hedgepeth, Kathleen Henry, Eugene Henry, Nicole Holland, David Hunsicker, Crissa Ireland, Bridget Jacobs, Nahkia Johnson, Zachary Jones, Kimberly Kaplan, Patricia Kennedy, Kayla Knight, Naa Lartey, Katielynn Lascik, Tasliem Lassiter, Austin Lastoskie, Ashley Lenhardt, Lauren Lenko, Zachary Lepore, Kelsey Lindberg, Kevin Liptak, Renee Long, Nate Long, Vicente Lopez, Shannon Lyons, Scott MacNeill, Vickey Maxey, Christina McFetridge, Jesse McKeon, Samar Meselhay, Christina Miller, Ashley Miller, Sharypha Milton, Cassandra Moloney, Angelique Moon, Brock Morgan, Joyce Mort, Heather Mueller, Morgan Naughton, Allura Nealy, Brandon Neikam, Kelly Neiman, Kristen Neiman, Melissa Netzel, Madeline Niggel, Christina O’Brien, Stefanie O’Connor, Olatunde Oladipo, Marta Oliver, Joshua Overholt, Aubrey Pace, Takia Paschall, Daniel Pavlik, Pamela Payne, Allison Picco, Kristin Ploshay, Tandra Rambert, James Regan, Christina Reice, Cassandra Reichard, Kyle Richards, Cody Robbins, Haley Robbins, Crystal Rogers, Carol Roth, Omar Santiago, Tyler Schiery, Courtney Schukraft, Erin Sellers, Megan Seydel, Angela Shepherd, Jacob Slick, Joshua Smith, Timothy Spollen, Scott Spollen, Rita Stadelmaier, Cynthia Steed, Jessica Stewart, Rosalie Summerill, Axel Swanson, Jessica Tente, Angel Thomas, Debra Timmins, Danna Tolentino, Bethany Tornetta, Nicholas Tornetta, Derek Towson, Jennifer Trenn, Rochelle Trump, Allysha Vasquez, Diana Viguers, Chelsea Waisanen, Jennifer Walker-spry, MaryLou Washko, Barbara Whitehurst, Christopher Wilcox, Charles Williams, Robert Wilson, Luis Woodridge, John Zaneski, Sherry Zawada, Leon Zielinski

Pottsville: Montgomery Negron

Putnam Valley, N.Y.: Desiree McBride

Quakertown: Donald Barnes, Christopher Gorman, Jose Mori, April Nase, Sharon Park, Philip Sergi, Alex Wu

Reading: Susan Ainley, Maureen Dennis, Ashley Galamba, Jennifer Moran, Anne Ofili, Jonathon Piccarreta, Eric Shortes, Cynthia Smith

Red Hill: Ciro Chiaro, Scott Cole, Stephanie Cox, Charles Dunlap, Emily Heiser, Aaron Leimbach, Jane Robeson, Kyle Savidge

Richlandtown: Samantha Titus

Ridley Park: Megan Heffernan

Rochester: Susan Heilman

Rockledge: Melissa Diciacco

Roslyn: John Adlam, Sean Duval, James Harris, Tonya Hill, David Hindin, Darla Kelly, Mathew Mandel, Stephen Matakonis, Emily McKay, Robert Nelson, Alena Poli, Ivette Ramos, Kevin Rankin, Ashley Ross, Sarah Shantz, Charles Standiford, Man Vo, Jesse Wallace 

Royersford: Katharine Beck, Thomas Boring, Mary Braunsberg, Ashley Brewer, Michael Brooks, Joseph Bullick, Meghan Burgess, Sara Calcinore, Phillip Cardinal, Rachel Carter, Siti Cauffman, Crystal Ceneviva, Haleigh Cornell, Sean Craner, Nicholas Crisci, Michael Cross, Yanet Diana, Brandon Dietrich, Devon Dietrich, Abdulqadir Farah, Elliott Guffey, Bradley Guldin, Jadah Hill, Ryan Karpinski, Valerie Katein, Eleanor Kennedy, Jason Kraft, Carla Lake, Lisa Luca, Anthony Malloy, Benjamin Mansmann, Joshua Martin, Kimberly Matta, Michael McGeary, Christina Melendez, Bryan Metzler, James Montague, Michael O’Connor, Justine Pascal, Ashley Pattershall, Mark Peden, Lauren Puia, Alissa Rohrbach, Kelly Sharadin, David Simpson, Diana Sisson, Andrew Starling, Patrick Sullivan, Shawna Taylor, Shayna Velasquez, Olivia Whitby, Wesley Winters, Sarah Wong

Rutledge: Janine Michael

Rydal: Ryan Cranney, Kerri Sheehy

Saint Marys: Emily Minehart

Saint Petersburg Beach: Elizabeth Perotti 

Salfordville: Nick Class

Sanatoga: Jami Hains, Nethania Mack, Dezaray Michener, Vanessa Suny 

Sassamansville: Valerie Andreyko

Schwenksville: Tyler-Marie Adkinson, Michael Angelucci, Shelby Barron, Michael Bojsza, Jansen Brooks, James Brott, Kelsey Brown, Rachel Carroll, Devon Carrow, Kelly Cope, Samuel Covell, Corinne Dedrick, Keith Douglass, Matthew Douglass, Andrew Fitzpatrick, Erika Floyd, Nicole Frye, Danielle Grando, Jackie Hanahan, Colleen Heidel-Butler, Nicole Improto, Talia Kerch, Jonathan Kivlin, Keith Kling, Alyssa Lee, Kimberly Libby, Alycia McCool, Marta Pecharo, Megan Ryan, Carolyn Schell, Philip Smith, Shannon Stewart, Shirley Suder, Ryan Teterus, Amy Waychoff, Alyssa Weirich, Marie Zoccola 

Sellersville: Shane Burns, Michelle Hillegass, Emmeline McIlvain

Sinking Springs: Shobha Nama 

Skippack: Donna Fox, Soo Jin Park

Souderton: Rachana Amin, Rebecca Auseichyk, Heorhi Auseichyk, Kathleen Bauer, Jynell Behe, Kevin Blankenship, Alvaro Camacho, Andrew Crugnale, Victoria Danberry, Devon Detweiler, Falon Diaz Gamez, Corin Dietterich, John Do, Donna Frueh, Don Gee, Kelli Goodwin, Kristy Harrington, Benjamin Huber, Taylor Jones, Timothy Judson, Diana Kline, Alyssa Kopp, Richard Kriebel, Maximilian Kwiatkowski, Richard Lentz, Bryon Lightcap, Diana Malloy, Tejaskumar Manvar, Mikaela Martin, Rachael Martin, Alexis Mechalas, Melanie Misra, Stacy Nelligan, Jennifer Peterson, Ranae Richardson, Aaron Scott, C. Selheimer, Daniel Smith, Alexander Sowhangar, Nicholas Villucci, Julianna Vukovich, Jason Wolff, Courtney Wright

Spring City: Robert Bielawski, Natalie Bozzelli, Paul Bryan, Nicola Caldwell-Macelree, Stephen Carreon, Miranda Dombrosky, Beili Hong, Nicholas Jensen, Jillian Magee, Michael Shaw, Michele Walk, William Washington, Paige White, Corey Zawacki

Stevens: Autumn Ziegler

Stewartstown: Louis Marrazzi

Stowe: Jereme Green, Julie Mann, Regina Outterbridge, Stephanie Patton, Denise Ruser, Jackie Stong, Angela Warren

Sumneytown: Brad Briddes, Elisabeth Metz

Swedesburg: Susan Butler, Monica Szczesna

Telford: Carlos Basurto-Rosero, Ellen Bernier, Jessica Berry, Christopher Bretz, Cortney Cantwell, Dorothy Collison, John Cutrone, Dylan Derstine, Kevin Detweiler, Tuyet-Nhung Duong, Samir Edens, Sarah Francis, Kristen Godshall, Elliot Groff, Andrea Gurgick, Nicole Hollinger, Benjamin Isaak, Colleen Keeler, Frank Kelley, Hillary Kessler, Larissa Landis, Ethan Martin, Nicholas Martins, Aimee McKittrick, Tyler McMaster, Gregory Mendrzycki, Jared Moyer, Vy Nguyen, Payal Patel, Susan Piston, Phylisha Ravenell, Joah Rittenhouse, Katelyn Rodgers, Ryan Rossi-Ellinger, David Smith, Suzanne Sprouse, Mathias Stangl-Riehle, Brooke Wasser, Christopher Westover, Andrew White, Jesse Whitworth, Warren Youells, Kerion Youells

Towanda: Josiah Bahl

Townsend, Del.: Joyce Fields

Trappe: Ashley Collier, Bailey Delong, Joseph Demarco, Melanie Johnson, Jillian Nabozny, Michael Schankel, Matthew Schondra, Stephanie Schultz

Trooper: Heather Brown, Christina Printz

Tylersport: Katrina Benecke

Upper Darby: Souleymane Kantako

Villanova: Hiba Butt

Warminster: Chelsea Epstein, Daniel Kunf

Warrington: Kyle Hahn, Yoav Kenig, Hadar Kenig, David Thom

Wayne: David Kroll

West Chester: Sandra Brooks, Henry Waholek, Manuela Whalen

West Conshohocken: Anton Deleon, Jonathan Scherr, Brittany Stanish

West Lawn: Bridget Pfeil

West Norriton: Enion Hampton, Charles Venezia

Willow Grove: Jordan Ammaturo, Nicole Andreas, Brooke Burg, Aryn Cantagallo, Samantha Cojocariu, Tenijua Dix, John Dugan, Shane Ebner, Latia Floyd, Victoria Grochowaski, Kevin Healy, Katherine Heywood, Michelle Hignett, Weiqiao Huang, Peter Johnson, Kendall Langenstein, Ashanti Lloyd, Cherie Long, Asil Martin, Felicia McDaniel, Andrea McLee, Laura McManus, Shane Nicholson, Tanga Orlina, Amy Page, Julia Paolini, Daniel Rajnath, Betsy Ringkamp, Amy Schultz, Terri-Ann Sidberry, Lillian Smith, Theresa Smith, Michael Stretton, Michael Young, Matt Zhang

Worcester: Owen Murphy

Wyncote: Kendra Adams, Naomi Alston, Nicholas Boonie, Leslie Bricker, Nikita Clayton, Erik Edwardson, Leslie Gadaleta, Christopher Mak, Anthony Mills, Maria Peterson, Brittni Smith 

Wyndmoor: Paige Brower, Joseph Cawley, Tyler Degiacomo, Pasquale Depaul, Carl Kashner Puzzanchera, Ashley Porrini, Blake Rogers, Shannon Scavello, Brandi Spencer 

Wynnewood: Katarzyna Jakubek, Eric Nehls, Jaime Senig

Yeadon: Anna Forrest

Zieglerville: Andrew Alesio, Danielle Carfagno, Lindsay Curson, Andrew Hutzell, Emily Mehl, King Ng, Cheryl Oliphant, Amanda Spry, Mack Talley, Phuoc Vo

Graduates Transfer to Bucknell; Students Become Summer Scholars

by Alana J. Mauger

Eleven Montgomery County Community College students soon will be attending Bucknell University in Lewisburg, Pa., through the Bucknell Community College Scholars Program.

Bucknell Summer Scholars (from left): Brian Richmond, Mary Colleen Watson, Yinquing (Lindsay) Pan, Margaret Crush, and Summer Grenyion-Smith. Jeremy Lowery is not pictured. Photo by Sandi Yanisko

Bucknell Summer Scholars (from left): Brian Richmond, Mary Colleen Watson, Yinquing (Lindsay) Pan, Margaret Crush, and Summer Grenyion-Smith. Jeremy Lowery is not pictured. Photo by Sandi Yanisko

Six of the students—Margaret Crush, North Wales; Summer Grenyion-Smith, Ambler; Jeremy Lowery, Gilbertsville; Yinquing (Lindsay) Pan, Blue Bell; Brian Richmond, Gilbertsville; and Mary Colleen Watson, Phoenixville, will participate in Bucknell’s Summer 2014 Residency Program.

During the summer program, selected students enroll in two courses and work with student and faculty mentors for six weeks. The program is free for the students and includes tuition, room and board and books. Participating students then have the opportunity to apply to Bucknell in 2014, and if accepted, they will transfer to the university with junior status on full-tuition scholarships.

Bucknell transfer graduates (from left) Mallory Murphy, Brian Hipwell, Ken Stephon, David Reedel, and Lydia Crush. Photo by Sandi Yanisko

Bucknell transfer graduates (from left) Mallory Murphy, Brian Hipwell, Ken Stephon, David Reedel, and Lydia Crush. Photo by Sandi Yanisko

Five of the students who participated in last year’s summer program— Lydia Crush, North Wales; Brian Hipwell, Cheltenham; Mallory Murphy, West Lawn; David Reedel, Roslyn; and Ken Stephon, Doylestown—were selected to transfer to the university in the fall as juniors with full-tuition scholarships from Bucknell.

Initially funded for four years by the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation, the Bucknell Community College Scholars Program enables high-achieving, low-income community college students to complete their undergraduate education at the university. According to Mark Davies, Bucknell’s Assistant Vice President for Enrollment Management and the liaison for the Community College Scholars Program, the university is committed to continuing the program, which it has funded for the past four years.

Montgomery and Bucknell alumnus Oscar Beteta. Photo by Sandi Yanisko

Montgomery and Bucknell alumnus Oscar Beteta. Photo by Sandi Yanisko

During an annual scholarship reception on May 14, Montgomery and Bucknell alumnus Oscar Beteta spoke about how the program enabled him to reach his goals. After earning his associate’s degree at Montgomery County Community College, he transferred to Bucknell on full-tuition scholarship and graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Chemical Engineering. He now works as an engineer at Air Products and Chemicals. Inc. Beteta was part of the first summer cohort to participate Bucknell Community College Scholars Program.

Montgomery County Community College has participated in Bucknell’s Community College Scholars Program since 2006. Including this year’s scholars, a total of 54 students attended the summer residency program, and, including this year’s graduates, a total of 36 students transferred to Bucknell on full-tuition scholarships.

Bucknell’s program extends to five community colleges: Montgomery County Community College, Garrett College, Lehigh Carbon Community College, Community College of Philadelphia and Harrisburg Area Community College.

Student Ryan Bergman Earns National Honor as 2014 Newman Civic Fellow

by Kara Aiello and Alana J. Mauger

Ryan Bergman. Photo by Sandi Yanisko

Ryan Bergman. Photo by Sandi Yanisko

Montgomery County Community College student and community leader Ryan Bergman, Collegeville, is among an elite group of students in the country to earn the 2014 Newman Civic Fellow Award from Campus Compact.

The Newman Civic Fellows Award honors college student leaders nationwide who inspire others and have worked to find solutions for challenges facing the community. According to the organization’s website, through service, research, and advocacy, Newman Civic Fellows are making the most of their college experiences to better understand themselves, the root causes of social issues, and effective mechanisms for creating lasting change.

A Social Sciences major concentrating in Psychology, Bergman dedicates his service efforts to eradicating poverty and homelessness both on local and national levels. Selected as a Scholar for Community Service at MCCC for the 2013-14 academic year, Bergman used the opportunity to strengthen the College’s relationship with the Montgomery County chapter of Habitat for Humanity and Habitat ReStore.

“Ryan’s commitment and dedication to issues of homelessness and poverty have assisted in raising student awareness about Habitat for Humanity and ways to individually support the work being done within the County,” shared College President Dr. Karen A. Stout in her letter of recommendation to Campus Compact.

Bergman chartered and serves as president of the College’s Habitat Club, whose members support ongoing volunteer dates at Habitat build-sites throughout the year. He also served as co-leader at the Habitat ReStore site in January during a college-wide day of service and again in March during spring break.

“Our goal for this new club is to show the importance of improving our community and lending a helping hand whenever needed,” explained Bergman.

In addition to his work locally, Bergman is a two-time participant in the College’s Alternative Spring Break program. In 2013, he traveled with students to West Virginia to build houses with Habitat for Humanity’s Collegiate Challenge, and in 2014, they volunteered at The Samaritan Woman in Baltimore, Md., a transitional residence program for victims of human trafficking.

An electrician by trade, it was Bergman’s job that first brought him to the College when his company was contracted to do electrical work on the College’s new Children’s Center. While working on the Center, Bergman began to fall out of love with his career choice, especially as he noticed students around his age walking to and from class.

“They all seemed full of life and motivated,” he shared.

When the company for which he was working closed two years later, Bergman enrolled in College’s Engineering Technology program, but soon switched to Social Sciences. He also got heavily involved in service work through the College’s Office of Student Leadership & Involvement, where he is a work-study student.

“I juggle my busy life by optimizing every moment of time; time management is crucial to excel at the college level,” he shared, adding that the work-study position enables him to “know the current happenings around campus” and participate as much as possible.

Adding to his full schedule, Bergman is also president of the College’s Psychology Club, performs contracting and electrical work off campus, and still finds time for basketball and weight training, as well as for saltwater fishing, longboarding and hiking.

After he graduates from Montgomery, Bergman plans to continue his education in Clinical Psychology, knowing that the College prepared him for the next chapter in his life.

“I know it sounds cliché, but I have truly found a home here at Montgomery County Community College, and I hope that I can one day return to inspire other people to follow their dreams.”

Newman Civic Fellows are recommended by college and university presidents to acknowledge motivation and ability in public leadership. Newman Civic Fellows awards are made in memory of Frank Newman, who dedicated his life to creating systemic change through education reform.

Students Named to Who’s Who Among American Junior Colleges

Eighty students from Montgomery County Community College’s Class of 2014 were named to Who’s Who Among Students in American Junior Colleges. To qualify for Who’s Who, students must be graduating during the 2013-2014 academic year with a grade point average of at least 2.75 and must be nominated by a member of MCCC’s faculty or staff.

The 2014 Who’s Who students are listed below by area of residence:

Ambler: Abigail Drakely, Devin Spillane, Ruschell Turner

Audubon: Kristine Kuhna

Bala Cynwyd: Helia Akbari, Robert Brothers

Bernville: Katie Williams

Blue Bell: Harris Risell

Cheltenham:Brian Hipwell

Coatesville: Heather Anderson

Conshohocken:Tina Ambs, Ali Mohammed

Eagleville: Dominique Lorena Owens-Pinkney

East Greenville: Ianna Rementer

East Norriton: Philene Moore, Melanie Schappell

Elkins Park: Octavia Beyah

Gilbertsville: Serena Dunlap, Donald Craig McHenry

Glenside: Victoria Clark, Jennifer Garvin, Otto Kuehrmann

Harleysville: Becca Bilofsky, Diane Doman, Katie Greiner, Syeda Hussain, Jordan Zdon

Hatboro: Emily Watkins, Fred Zajac

Hatfield: Md Sabir Islam, Cristy Stevens

Horsham: Danielle Cole, Nicole Hobbs, Cassandra West

Huntingdon Valley: Lisa Malone

Jenkintown: Min Choi

Lansdale: Magdalena Bartnikowska, Jeffrey Berest, Melissa Clark, Marisa Dormer, Sarah Fequiere, Jennifer Lundy

Levittown: Kaley Bradshaw

Norristown: Erin Cooper, Brianne Early, Carlos Gordon, Kenneth Hayse, Robert Hunt, Lisa Kalinovski

North Wales: Grace Kim, Catherine Quinn, Nicole Revitsky

Perkiomenville: Merissa DiMino

Philadelphia: Lauren Cimini, Jenna Clay, Christine Koller

Phoenixville: Amanda Force, Paul Gretzer, Yolanda Rosas

Pipersville: Emily Litwin

Plymouth Meeting: Diane Arnone, Amy Ecklund, Briana Granese, Kayla Hodges, Raya Jones, Tyler Tucker

Pottstown: Leyna Gilleland, Amber Quinter, Joshua Smith, Cynthia Steed

Roslyn: Alena Poli

Schwenksville: Devon Carrow, Jonathan Kivlin

Trappe: Amanda Beyer 

Trooper: Heather Brown

Wayne: Kristen Born

West Chester: Manuela Whalen

Wyncote: Nikita Clayton

Wyndmooor: Paige Brower

Business Students Earn Awards at PBL State Leadership Conference

by Alana J. Mauger

PhiBetalogoMontgomery County Community College’s chapter of Phi Beta Lambda (PBL) earned several awards during competitions at the PBL State Leadership Conference last month in Gettysburg. The winners will compete in the national conference in Nashville, Tenn. in June.

Four MCCC students earned first place awards: Matt Handwerk, Lansdale, in the Accounting Principles competition; Lindsey Montague, Wyncote, and Jacob Robertston, Malvern, in the Business Decision Making competition; and Jessica Sauer, Lansdale, in the Job Interview competition.

Ariel Mookherji, Plymouth Meeting, was honored with the Who’s Who in PBL award for her role as MCCC’s chapter president and as vice president for the State Executive Council for Phi Beta Lambda Pennsylvania. Prior to the conference, MCCC student Kevin Burks, Philadelphia, was selected for the role of Internship Conference Photographer based on a review of his portfolio.

In addition to these individual honors, MCCC’s PBL chapter earned the Spirit Award for its ongoing engagement with the state organization.

During the PBL State Leadership Conference, MCCC’s students competed against chapters from across the state, including four-year institutions such as Temple University, Drexel University and University of Pittsburgh. Along with the competitions, MCCC students participated in workshops and business events during the conference.

Phi Beta Lambda is a student-led, collegiate-level organization of the Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA). For more information, visit fbla-pbl.org.

Olivet Boys and Girls Club Donates $15,000 for Student Scholarships

by Diane VanDyke

The non-profit organization, the Olivet Boys and Girls Club of Reading and Berks County, recently presented a $15,000 check to the Montgomery County Community College Foundation for student scholarships. The Foundation is adding an additional $5,000 to the scholarship program.

The combined scholarship funds of $20,000 will enable youth at the Olivet Boys & Girls Club’s Richard J. Ricketts Center in Pottstown to enroll and take classes at Montgomery County Community College. Currently, three students are receiving the scholarship funds and eight additional students have applied. The scholarships are used to cover the remaining costs of tuition and books not covered by federal Pell or other grants.

“We have overlapping missions to bring deserving students through the higher education pipeline and have them graduate without debt,” said College President Dr. Karen A. Stout at the check presentation.

“We are excited for the future of these young people. Thank you for this partnership,” said Dr. James Smith, Interim CEO for Olivet. “We will continue to find funding sources to provide scholarships to help level the playing field.”

The Olivet Boys & Girls Club has been serving the youth of Reading, Berks County and beyond since 1898 when it was started by William McCormick. Olivet is a chartered member of the Boys & Girls Clubs of America. It incorporates many of the national organization’s youth programs into the local branches, including at the Richard J. Ricketts Center, 640 Beech Street, Pottstown, which is under the direction of Janice Burgess, the club director.

The College has had a growing relationship with the Olivet Boys and Girls Club at the Ricketts Center. For the past three years, students and staff of the College have volunteered to help at the Center on Martin Luther King Day of Service. Additionally, students have volunteered on their own to help at the Center.

Olivet Boys and Girls Club of Reading and Berks County presented a $15,000 check to the Montgomery County Community College Foundation on April 30 for student scholarships. The Foundation is adding an additional $5,000 to the scholarship program. From left, College President Dr. Karen A. Stout, Olivet Interim CEO Dr. James Smith, Vice President of West Campus Steady Moono, Ricketts Center Club Director Janice Burgess and Olivet Development Director Camille Stock. Photo by Sandi Yanisko

Olivet Boys and Girls Club of Reading and Berks County presented a $15,000 check to the Montgomery County Community College Foundation on April 30 for student scholarships. The Foundation is adding an additional $5,000 to the scholarship program. From left, College President Dr. Karen A. Stout, Olivet Interim CEO Dr. James Smith, Vice President of West Campus Steady Moono, Ricketts Center Club Director Janice Burgess and Olivet Development Director Camille Stock. Photo by Sandi Yanisko

Phi Theta Kappa Chapters Earn ‘Five Star Status’

by Alana J. Mauger

Montgomery County Community College’s Phi Theta Kappa (PTK) chapters have achieved the distinction of Five Star Status this spring during the organization’s annual convention in Orlando, Fla. April 24-26.

Alpha Kappa Zeta, based at the Central Campus in Blue Bell, and Beta Tau Lambda, based at the West Campus in Pottstown, both earned the highest level of recognition by progressing through PTK’s Five Star Chapter Development Plan.

As part of the plan, PTK chapter officers must develop and execute a business plan that optimizes the benefits and programs offered by their chapter while furthering the mission of Phi Theta Kappa nationally.  Incorporated into the program are basic chapter administration, regional activities, an international service program, an honors study topic, Hallmark Awards, international activities and a college project.

In addition to achieving Five Star Status, Beta Tau Lambda (Pottstown) was named a Gold Chapter for increasing student membership and engagement over the past year.

Phi Theta Kappa is an international honor society whose purpose is to recognize and encourage scholarship among students attending two-year college. To be eligible for membership, students must maintain a grade point average of 3.5 or above and must have completed at least 12 credits.

MCCC’s PTK chapters operate through the College’s Office of Student Leadership and Involvement.

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Individuals in Recovery Find Success in ‘POWERful’ Program

by Alana J. Mauger

 Montgomery County Community College  celebrated the journey of 19 individuals who successfully completed the spring session of its innovative Partnership on Work Enrichment and Readiness (POWER) Program on April 22 during a ceremony at the Central Campus in Blue Bell.

The POWER Program helps individuals in mental health recovery to successfully develop and reach their education and career goals through a two-credit college course that focuses on time management, basic computer skills, study skills, public speaking, college success skills, career assessment, resume writing and professionalism.

For the graduates, the POWER Program gives them the confidence and skills they need to take the next steps in their lives. Several participants reflected on their journeys during the ceremony.

“The POWER Program has given me the tools to succeed and has improved my confidence by 110 percent,” said Qiani Bennett, who described her decade-long “tug-of-war” with depression. “I will never forget the role this class has played in my journey.”

A mother of three sons, Bennett is enrolled in MCCC’s Human Services program for the fall semester.

POWER participant Leya Ross, who spoke about her struggle with post-traumatic stress disorder, will be joining Bennett in the Human Services program this fall.

“I will be a confident, productive and successful critical thinker. I will carry everything I have learned for the rest of my life,” she vowed.

Devon Heise was the final student to speak, sharing her emotional journey through years of drug abuse, incarceration, rehab and attempts at college.

“All of these failures piled up,” she said. “I somehow survived a grim reality that was so bleak.”

Going forward, Heise hopes to work with teenagers as a way to give back to those professionals who helped her.

“Instead of letting my past mistakes define me, they now influence who I am today,” she shared.

As part of the ceremony, 14 students were recognized for their achievements through the POWER Plus Program. These are former POWER participants who are now attending college classes or are currently employed as a result of completing the program.

“I felt my mind expanding and myself improving already during [new student] orientation,” said POWER Plus participant Bob Maddox, who is enjoying his Spanish classes at MCCC and hopes to one day become a translator.

Associate Professor of Psychology and POWER Program Director Diane Haar presented a POWER Advocate Award to Nancy Wieman, who is retiring from her post as Deputy Administrator for Montgomery County’s Mental Health Services after 28 years.

“Nancy has been at the forefront of the mental health recovery movement, and as a result of her work, the County’s program is not only a model for the state, but also for the country.”

In addition to Haar, the College’s POWER team consists of Program Coordinator/Advisor Lisa Barbiero, Community Liaison/Advisor Lori Schreiber, Peer Mentor George Rohde, Administrative Coordinator Dianne Johnson, Faculty Rose Regan, and Dean of Social Sciences Dr. Aaron Shatzman.

Montgomery County Community College and the Office of Montgomery County Behavioral Health/Development Disabilities provide funding for POWER and POWER Plus Programs, which also receive support from the Huston Foundation, Patricia Kind Foundation, the OddFellows of Philadelphia and other private foundations. However, the programs are in need of funding to continue next year.

Individuals interested in the POWER program may obtain a referral from their mental health or school provider or may self-refer.  For more information, contact Community Liaison Lori Schreiber at 215-461-1151 or lschreib@mc3.edu or Program Advisor Lisa Barbiero at 215-641-6425 or lbarbier@mc3.edu.

POWER and POWER Plus Program participants and staff at April 2014 graduation ceremony.  Photo by Sandi Yanisko

POWER and POWER Plus Program participants and staff at April 2014 graduation ceremony. Photo by Sandi Yanisko

Computer Science Students Showcase Work During Spring Tech Day

by Alana J. Mauger 

Students enrolled in Associate Professor Kendall Martin’s Computer Science II—Object Oriented Programming (CIS 111b) course at Montgomery County Community College showcased their projects on April 24 at the Central Campus in Blue Bell.

“We want students enrolled in CIS 111 [Computer Science I – Programming/Concept] to see the kinds of projects they can work on if they enroll in the next course,” explained Martin, who organizes these Technology Transfer Days at the end of each semester. “In the intro class, students really learn the basics, but in the CIS 111b course, they get to apply that knowledge and work on collaborative projects like the ones showcased here.”

Among those projects was an MCCC mobile app, developed by students Julian Greenberg, Roberto Zuccarini, Dan Marcoux and Wellington Rodriguez.

“Info about the College is spread everywhere, so we designed a centralized mobile site with information that students care about, such as food service hours, Org Sync [student club portal] and Blackboard,” explained Greenberg, who will be transferring into Penn State Abington’s Information Systems Technology program.

Greenberg is president of the Tech Connect Support Squad, a new student club that provides peer “help desk” support to students at the Central Campus, which enabled him to get real student feedback on his project.

CIS 111b students Dan Marcoux, Wellington Rodriguez and Julian Greenberg showcase their mobile app. Photos by Alana J. Mauger

CIS 111b students Dan Marcoux, Wellington Rodriguez and Julian Greenberg showcase their mobile app. Photos by Alana J. Mauger

Another team, comprised of Robert Vogel, Jonathan Drozd and Kevin Loughlin, developed a real-time text translator to enhance communication for international students. The Android-based app uses a smart phone’s built in camera, Microsoft Translate and Google to provide real-time text translation for a variety of languages, including Spanish, French, Russian, Arabic and Hindi, among others.

Student Zac Chelbi demonstrates a level on The Big Robot Game

Student Zac Chelbi demonstrates a level on The Big Robot Game.

Former CIS 111b student Zac Chelbi returned to this semester’s technology event to showcase The Big Robot Game, which he and his team are developing as part of the College’s Electronic Game and Simulation Design program.

“Players can customize their tanks and environment. We’re still working on adding functionality and on simplifying the process to launch,” said Chelbi, who is transferring to the Art Institute in the fall.

Other students from the class, like Paul Lizeaus, partnered with MCCC’s Engineering program to write code and develop a website for the program’s Quad Forge project.

“The program is open source, so we actually made a change that was later incorporated into the program by the original designer,” shared Lizeaus, who is transferring to West Chester University in the fall.

CIS 111 and 111b are required courses for many of the College’s STEM programs, including Computer Networking, Electronic Game and Simulation Design, Information Technology, Software Engineering and Web Design and Development, among others. To learn more, visit mc3.edu/academics.

Montgomery Selected for National Job Ready, Willing and Able Initiative

by Diane VanDyke

Montgomery County Community College is one of 17 community colleges from across the country selected to participate in Job Ready, Willing and Able Initiative (JRWA) to help train America’s workforce. The American Association of Community Colleges (AACC) recently announced the Walmart Foundation will provide a $4.19 million three-year grant to support the JRWA initiative with $2.67 million directly supporting community colleges, including MCCC.

“Montgomery County Community College’s Center for Workforce Development provides high-quality business skills programs to meet the needs of individuals, businesses and professional organizations in Montgomery County and the local region,” said College President Dr. Karen A. Stout. “The Job Ready, Willing and Able Initiative will allow the Center to offer new courses that will enable students to gain viable skills needed for immediate employment opportunities.”

The JRWA initiative will provide middle-skill training, industry recognized credentials, and access to employment across varying industry sectors in each of the 17 communities.

As part of this initiative, MCCC will develop a pipeline through its existing Office Administration Program to create a non-credit, competency-based Office Assistant certificate. Students will enroll in three courses—Business Software Essentials, Microsoft Word Applications and Modern Office Management—to attain computer literacy skills, as well as the vital “soft” skills expected by employers in business environments. The certificate can be completed in less than a year, allowing students to quickly enter the workforce.

Additionally after completing the certificate, students will have the opportunity to pursue the Microsoft Office Specialist certification exam for Microsoft Word 2013. This sought-after credential provides students with marketable skills that will further increase their chances for employment. Moreover, students who complete this certificate will have the opportunity to stack the courses into credit programs at the College, if they decide to continue their education in the Office Administration field and gain additional skills that will lead to new opportunities and higher salaries.

According to the Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry, office and administrative support occupations is one of the largest occupation groups in the Commonwealth. The Center for Workforce Information and Analysis projects 105 annual openings in this field in Montgomery County. Additionally, there is a growing need in the Montgomery County Region for general office clerks, with an expected 338 annual openings in the County and an estimated 14,620 total jobs in 2016.

“We are proud to continue our work with Walmart Foundation at a time when the nation is focused on middle-skill careers and opportunities. This initiative is a model for how community colleges can connect students with specific, sustainable jobs in their communities and contribute to long-term economic growth,” said Walter Bumphus, AACC president and CEO.

Working with the Montgomery County Workforce Investment Board, the College plans to reach unemployed populations to provide this invaluable training to fill the open office positions of the County’s workforce. Additionally, the College will work with the Keystone Education Yields Success (KEYS) program to offer this training to deserving students in the program.

The AACC selected the 17 participating colleges through a highly competitive process. Four colleges will be mentor colleges, with support from AACC, the National Association of Workforce Boards, AACC Affiliate Councils and industry associations. Mentors were selected from AACC’s 2008–2010 Workforce Economic Opportunity Initiative funded by Walmart Foundation and will provide additional guidance to 13 mentee colleges.

All colleges will work closely with local businesses, economic development leaders and the area workforce systems to collaboratively address the needs of the unemployed. The initiative aims to provide more than 5,000 unemployed adults with new skills, credentials and jobs.

The four selected mentor colleges are Arkansas Northeastern College, Arkansas; Northeast Community College, Nebraska; Umpqua Community College, Oregon; and Northern Virginia Community College, Virginia.

In addition to MCCC, the 12 mentee colleges selected for the JRWA initiative are Grossmont College, California; Community College of Aurora, Colorado; St. Johns River State College, Florida; Kirkwood Community College, Iowa; Ivy Tech Community College, Indiana; Hazard Community and Technical College, Kentucky; Jamestown Community College, New York; Cuyahoga Community College, Ohio; Northeast State Community College, Tennessee; Tarrant County College District, Texas; Snow College, Utah; and West Virginia University at Parkersburg, West Virginia.

Theatre Students use Creative Talents/Skills for Creative MontCo’s Artbox Competition

by Diane VanDyke

Back row, from left:  Steve Buck, Tyler Sanderson, Tim Odom. Front row, from left:  Timothy Gallagher, Matthew Nitchke, Brian Shim and Julia McIntyre. Photo by Sandi Yanisko

Back row, from left: Steve Buck, Tyler Sanderson, Tim Odom. Front row, from left: Timothy Gallagher, Matthew Nitchke, Brian Shim and Julia McIntyre. Photo by Sandi Yanisko

Students in Montgomery County Community College’s Drama Club and Theatre Arts program recycled defunct musical instruments to decorate a newspaper box on behalf of the Settlement Music School, Willow Grove, for Creative MontCo’s Artbox Competition.

All of the completed boxes will be on display during the Norristown Arts Hill Festival on Saturday, May 3, where they will be judged. Sponsored by the Philadelphia Inquirer, Philadelphia Daily News, PECO and the Montgomery County Foundation Inc., Creative MontCo’s contest challenged artists, nonprofits, community organizations, businesses, etc., to redesign a classic newspaper box and turn it into public art.

Several students—Tyler Sanderson of Skippack, Brian Shim of Ambler, Tim Odom of Lansdale, Matthew Nitchke also of Lansdale, Julia McIntyre of Springfield and Steven Buck of Hatfield—under the direction of Theater Instructor Timothy Gallagher, cut, soldered and welded parts of non-usable old instruments. Using epoxy, they attached the parts to the spray-painted newspaper box to create a G clef and musical notes.

“The students used skills they learned in our Theatre Production Workshop to turn a saxophone, trumpet and flute into these shapes,” said Gallagher. “This was a good starter project for them.”

The project also gave the students an opportunity to help the Settlement Music School, a community school that provides the high-quality instruction in music and the related arts to children and adults, regardless of age, background, ability or economic circumstances.

The students’ project is one of 50 Acts of Kindness that is part of the College’s 50th anniversary celebration.  Throughout 2014, MCCC students, faculty, staff, alumni and supporters are committed organizing 50 acts of community service – one for every year of the College’s existence. To learn more about the College’s 50th anniversary activities, visit mc3.edu/50.

Montgomery Builds Financial Literacy Model with ‘Next Generation Learning Challenges’ Grant

by Alana J. Mauger

Montgomery County Community College has received a $100,000 grant to build on the success of a financial literacy prototype, developed as part of the inaugural Next Generation Learning Challenges (NGLC) Breakthrough Models Incubator (BMI) cohort.

Last May, MCCC was one of seven institutions selected for the inaugural cohort. Each institution received $50,000 to design and launch a technology-based support program, specifically created to improve completion rates, the quality of student learning and the time it takes for degree completion. Last week, each of the seven institutions from the initial cohort received the next phase of funding, $100,000, made possible by a grant from EDUCAUSE through Next Generation Learning Challenges.

After participating in NGLC’s three-day workshop in July, MCCC’s team of eight faculty and staff was given three months to develop a prototype based on the College’s initial proposal to improve first-time students’ understanding of financial, civic, and digital literacies through the creation of a “New Literacy” Massive Open Online Course (MOOC).

“Students cite ‘financial concerns’ as the top reason for dropping out of courses, especially during the first two weeks of a semester. Therefore, in order to make significant gains in student retention and completion, we must first improve our students’ understanding of financial literacy,” said Dr. Karen A. Stout, president, MCCC.  “Our team has done outstanding work in building a pilot that has already helped hundreds of students strengthen their understand the financial aid process.”

After engaging students through focus groups and surveys, MCCC developed “Montco Money Matters,” a module that introduces students to the concept of paying for college. By working with content, media, technology and design experts from across MCCC, the team produced a multi-channel module that includes video displays, social media and face-to-face engagement, along with an online course-like experience.

The 30-minute, self-guided program introduces students to concepts of financial aid, loans and grants; highlights the long-term implications of loans and future debt; and makes them aware of other resources, like scholarships, to help pay for college. The program incorporates open-source and original content, including a computer-generated tour guide, short video clips featuring actual MCCC students, and links to off-campus resources that allow students to delve further into topics of interest.

A total of 425 students actively engaged in the pilot program during a seven-week period during the fall 2013 semester. Of those, 95 percent of students who provided feedback indicated they will recommend the online resources to others, and 80 percent said the course will influence future academic decisions. In addition, feedback revealed that student loans and scholarship information were the most valuable topics covered, and money management is a topic on which many students would like more information.

With the prototype completed and funding secured, MCCC’s next step is to build out additional modules under the umbrella of financial literacy. These modules could address topics such as cash management, budgeting, shopping for textbooks, transportation, loans and debt, among others. The College also hopes to make “Montco Money Matters” accessible to school districts within Montgomery County and to the general population at large.

In addition to Montgomery, six other selected schools are part of the inaugural NGLC BMI cohort, including Austin Peay State University, Ball State University, Charter Oak State College, SUNY-Empire State College, Harper College and the University of Maryland-University College.

Check out some of the videos from Montco Money Matters:

Videos by Matt Porter and Alana J. Mauger

Hospitality Students Serve the Hungry at MANNA on Main Street

by Nichole Hall

Sixteen Hotel & Restaurant Management students from Montgomery County Community College recently prepared and served dinner at Manna on Main Street (MANNA) to the homeless, as part of a class service learning project.  The project was also part of MCCC’s 50 Acts of Kindness, in celebration of the College’s 50th anniversary.

Located in Lansdale, MANNA is a community outreach organization whose mission is to end hunger in the North Penn region by providing soup kitchens, food pantries, and education programs to its residents.

All 16 students in Instructor James Lynch’s Fundamentals of Special Event Management course were involved in the project; half of the class prepared the food, while the other half served it at MANNA the following day. In the course, Lynch teaches students the set-up protocol for special events in the hospitality industry, as well as the necessary tasks that need to be fulfilled at corporations and conventions.

Upon arriving at MANNA, Operations Manager Scott Lukens prepped the students for service. The students were then assigned to different stations: serving food to the families, working in the kitchen to deliver food, or cleaning the dishes.  Listed on the menu for dinner was turkey breast, steamed broccoli, roasted herbed potatoes, artisan rolls, and garden salads. Chocolate mousse was served for dessert, and residents drank fruit punch, ice-tea, milk, and ice water, with milk being the most popular choice.

As a student service learning project, the purpose of serving dinner at MANNA was to connect what students learned in the classroom to a real-world experience.

“Projects such as this not only increase a student’s knowledge, but also reinforce our College’s commitment to service and the power of volunteerism,” said Lynch.  “These are the key building blocks in creating and growing a supportive and productive community.  The Hospitality Industry is uniquely positioned to do projects like this.  Success in our business is based upon the fundamentals of superior, consistent service—whether in a restaurant, hotel, or in the community.”

One student, Tom Heller, 21, was no stranger to being a server at the event.  The second-year student had previously been a server at Olive Garden and Rendazzo’s Pizzeria.  Heller enjoyed the event and shared his learning experience at MANNA.

“I’ve pretty much just learned that there’s a lot of people in the community and around us that are homeless,” he said. “We learned how [homelessness] was occurring. It’s a rough experience just seeing that and also going back to your house and talking to your family about [it], and also how they’ll react to it,” he said, describing the experience as “heartfelt.”

“It all got to us because once Scott [Lukens] announced that we were students from MCCC, and were making all this dinner and stuff, everyone was clapping and really appreciated the meal that we made for them,” Heller continued.

Lynch stressed the importance of preparing students to be good citizens, as well as successful professionals.

“By having our students actively involved in local hunger-relief activities, we hope that hands-on experiences, like MANNA, gives our students the opportunity to witness first-hand how powerful a gesture of kindness can be in the lives of those less fortunate. We strive to make our students not only successful professionals, but good citizens of their community as well.”

The students’ project at MANNA on Main Street is one of 50 Acts of Kindness as part of the College’s 50th anniversary celebration.  Throughout 2014, MCCC students, faculty, staff, alumni and supporters are committed organizing 50 acts of community service – one for every year of the College’s existence. To learn more about the College’s 50th anniversary activities, visit mc3.edu/50.

President Stout Participates in National STEM Leadership Conference

by Diane VanDyke

BLOG KStout2013PhotoMontgomery County Community College President Dr. Karen Stout joined other visionary leaders from business, government and education at the annual U.S. News STEM Solutions National Leadership Conference April 23-25 in Washington D.C. to discuss viable solutions for America’s skills and education gap in the areas of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM).

Dr. Stout was selected to serve on the panel, “The Community College, Reinvented,” and discussed effective practices used to engage and motivate students in STEM fields. The panel included Dr. Stout; Dr. Bruce H. Leslie, chancellor of Alamo Colleges, San Antonio, Texas; and Dr. Eduardo J. Padrón, president of Miami Dade College, Florida. They discussed methods to engage and retain students and how community colleges can implement high-impact practices that many four-year colleges use, including offering clearly defined career pathways with a focus on STEM skills and employability.

“Our country’s economy requires an educated, skilled workforce in the STEM career fields, and as a result, we have strengthened our programs and now provide more opportunities to engage students in these areas through hands-on learning experiences and a variety of partnerships,” Dr. Stout said. “It was an honor to join in this conversation and share how Montgomery County Community College is making a positive impact in the STEM fields.”

MCCC’s STEM programs integrate the key areas of experiential learning, professional development, connections with local businesses and academia, and direct access to defined college and career pathways.

In the Engineering program, for example, the College immerses students in a research and development experience with its QuadForge Undergraduate Research Program in which students, using open-source materials, create and develop unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) equipped with onboard Wi Fi and 4G communications, high-definition video recording, embedded electronics with full weatherization and customized mission computers.

The innovative nature of this project increases students’ motivation and participation. Further, the program allows first-year and sophomore students the opportunity to conduct research for real-life applications. Now in its third year, the program draws interest and investment from the Swiss government, private angel investors and corporate partners.

In the area of professional development, MCCC’s educators continually collaborate to develop their curricula, share resources and best practices and learn how to best support each other and students. The College’s streamlined Calculus program is an example of this ongoing teamwork. Using shared information and student data results, the Math department revamped the program to enable students to fulfill the Calculus requirements in two instead of the typical three semesters, allowing students to progress to upper level math and science courses and complete their degrees sooner.

As an ongoing initiative, the College has been building relationships with other STEM partners to provide more opportunities for students. For example, the College is part of the Northeast Biomanufacturing Center and Collaborative (NBC2) that consists of 22 industry partners from nine states and 14 education partners from 10 states. The shared vision for NBC2 is to be a nationally recognized center of excellence that develops a world-class sustainable biomanufacturing workforce to improve the quality of life.

To accomplish this vision, NBC2 supports the local development and growth of biopharmaceutical manufacturing and related industries that use bio-production methods. Many of the graduates of NBC2 are employed by biopharmaceutical companies, such as Merck & Co., Pfizer Inc., Genzyme Corp. and Lonza Group, to name a few. Additionally, NBC2 has received three National Science Foundation grants in recent years to implement outreach programs and create a biomanufacturing textbook.

One of the ways the College provides direct, clear pathways for graduating students is through its new Drexel University partnership. Starting in fall 2014, students who graduate from MCCC with an associate’s degree may enter into fully aligned degree program with Drexel that is taught at MCCC’s Central Campus in Blue Bell. Programs initially include B.S. in Business Administration with Co-Op; B.S. in Computing and Security Technology; B.S. in Electrical Engineering with Co-Op; B.S. M.S. in Engineering Management with Co-Op; Mechanical B.S. in Engineering with Co-Op; and a hybrid B.S.N. program designed for registered nurses.

Dr. Stout discussed these programs and initiatives, among others, during the panel discussion as viable solutions for engaging and retaining STEM-focused students.

U.S. News STEM Solutions National Leadership Conference is a mission-critical event focused on the shortage of science, technology, engineering and math skills in the American workforce. Produced by the U.S. News & World Report, it brings the issue onto the national stage and assembles major corporations, leading educators, top policymakers and education technology companies in order to create the collective impact needed to fill jobs now and advance the future STEM workforce. This year, the conference was held in conjunction with the USA Science and Engineering Festival in Washington D.C.

Long-Time Faculty, Staff to Address Graduates at 2014 Commencement

by Alana J. Mauger

With a combined 90 years of service to Montgomery County Community College, Professor of Economics Dr. Lee Bender and Vice President for Information Technology and College Services Dr. Celeste Schwartz will deliver the Commencement keynote address to graduates during the College’s 47th Commencement ceremony on May 15 at 7 p.m. in Blue Bell.

Founded in 1964, the College is in the midst of commemorating its 50th anniversary. Along with celebrating the successes of the class of 2014, the College will welcome its early graduating classes from 1968-1972 back to campus for Commencement as part of a yearlong celebration.

“The success of this year’s graduates, and the nearly 50,000 graduates before them, would not be possible without thousands of faculty and staff, who—throughout our history—have molded the institutional character of the College into the dynamic community it is today,” shared Dr. Karen A. Stout, president. “I’m honored that Dr. Lee Bender and Dr. Celeste Schwartz will share their experiences and wisdom with the College community as our 2014 Commencement keynote speakers.”

Dr. Lee Bender was first hired part-time to teach Economics in spring 1968, and he became one of 50 full-time faculty later that year. In 1989, he was appointed as the Dean of the College’s Division of Business and Computer Science, a position he held until 2007, when he went back to teaching as a full-time Professor of Economics. As Dean, Bender helped the College introduce more than 100 new courses, and he was also among the first faculty to teach a course fully online.

Bender holds bachelor’s degrees in Economics and Math from the College of Wooster, an MBA in Finance from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, and a Ph.D. in Monetary Theory, International Trade and Finance from Temple University.

Dr. Celeste Schwartz graduated with an associate’s degree in data processing from Montgomery in 1970. She has since dedicated her entire professional career to the students, faculty and staff of Montgomery County Community College, working her way from a support staff key-punch operator to her current position as Vice President for Information Technology and College Services. Schwartz has led the College’s IT department since 1977, and she is credited with writing the College’s very first course registration system.

In addition to her associate’s degree from Montgomery, Schwartz holds an MBA from St. Joseph’s University, a master’s degree in Computer Science from Villanova University, and a Ph.D. in Education from Walden University. In 2002, she was inducted into the College’s Alumni Hall of Fame.

VIDEO: Top 10 Reasons to Enroll in Summer Classes

In honor of David Letterman’s announced retirement from “The Late Show,” Montgomery County Community College students bring you their Top 10 reasons why you should enroll in summer classes…

Video by Matt Porter, Cindy Haney, Alana J. Mauger and Ashley Smith

5K Service Learning Project Raises $875 for Alex’s Lemonade Stand

ESW 5K Students and participants. Photo by Matt Carlin

ESW 5K Students and participants. Photos by Matt Carlin

by Diane VanDyke

Students in Montgomery County Community College’s Introduction to Exercise Science and Wellness (ESW 102) classes raised approximately $875 for Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation for Childhood Cancer by hosting a Run 5 Save Lives! 5K run/1-mile fun walk on April 14 at the College’s Central Campus, Blue Bell.

Sixty-eight participants—including community members, faculty, staff and students—participated in the 5K run/1-mile walk organized by 54 students under direction of ESW Assistant Professor Dr. Anne Livezey and Instructor Amanda Wooldridge, co-coordinators of the ESW program.

“The classes host a dodge ball tournament during the fall semester and a 5K run and walk during the spring as our service learning projects,” Livezey said, noting that the dodge ball tournament is more focused on student participation, whereas the run/walk targets all areas of the College. Faculty and staff also may count the walk/run as part of the employee wellness program.

The run and walk both started in the Central Campus quad.

The run and walk both started in the Central Campus quad.

Sporting tie-dyed shirts, the students registered the runners and walkers, sold baked goods and other items and cheered on the runners throughout the race around the campus grounds. The students planned, organized and promoted the event by creating promotional flyers and a video. They also reached out to local businesses for support, and Wawa of Blue Bell donated lemonade and iced tea for the festivities.

As a prelude to the 5K and walk, children from the College’s Children’s Center ran their own fun run around the quadrangle in the center of campus. ESW students work with the children on a weekly basis to teach them different physical activities and the importance of exercise as part of a healthy lifestyle.

The overall winner of the run was Assistant Professor of Economics Jill Beccaris-Pescatore. A seasoned runner, she competed in the Boston Marathon last month for the second time, finishing with her best time of 3 hours and 51 minutes.

Assistant Professor of Economics Jill Beccaris-Pescatore won the 5K race

Assistant Professor of Economics Jill Beccaris-Pescatore won the 5K race

In addition to raising money for Alex’s Lemonade, the event provided students with a feeling of accomplishment.

“Everyone had a great time, and it was nice to see the community come out to support the cause. I was excited to see how well the students took to the event, and it created a sense of community on the campus that I believe everyone benefitted from and enjoyed,” said student David J. Franco.

The students’ Run 5 Save Lives! event is one of the College’s 50 Acts of Kindness as part of the College’s 50th anniversary celebration. Throughout 2014, students, faculty, staff, alumni and supporters are committed to organizing 50 acts of community service—one for every year of the College’s existence. To learn more at the College’s 50th anniversary activities, visit mc3.edu/50.

Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation was started by cancer patient Alexandra “Alex” Scott in 2000 when she wanted to hold a lemonade stand to raise money to help find a cure for children with cancer. Since Alex created that first stand, the Foundation has grown into a national fundraising initiative to support research and help children with cancer.