Community Colleges – Key to fair society

Community college agenda: The endgame is a fair chance society

Gena Glickman, Ph.D. | Manchester Community College President

The American Association of Community College’s “Community College Agenda for the Trump Administration” is a blueprint for implementation of critical national higher education policy priorities, touching on needs regarding financial support, infrastructure investment and regulatory issues from a national policy perspective. (Download the full document here.)

In the recently released document, the AACC presents a vision of “how the federal government can help community colleges fulfill their mission of building a stronger America.” This vision resonates within Connecticut as well. I’d like to personalize that perspective to help underscore how investment in Connecticut’s community colleges helps secure the future of our state.

At Manchester Community College, alumni like Stephen Phillips ’16 illustrate the imperative of higher education and the critical importance of our colleges to provide individuals with economic opportunities. Stephen left what he considered to be a dead-end career after 16 years and enrolled in MCC’s Occupational Therapy Assistant (OTA) program. He describes his move at 57 years old as “scary,” but he landed an OTA position following our program’s coursework and simultaneous supervised clinical experience. Today, he couldn’t be happier and he is excited about a new-found future.

Another recent student, Than Soe Aye – who came to the U.S. as a refugee from Myanmar – is now employed full-time at Pratt & Whitney. Than served an apprenticeship there as part of the college’s short-term precision manufacturing program. He earned six credits and a certificate through this program, and now that he’s a permanent employee, he is eligible to take advantage of the company’s employee scholarship program to complete his college education while earning a living at the same time. READ MORE

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