Dr. Kathleen Hetherington is the fourth president of Howard Community College (HCC) and the first in its 42-year history to have begun an academic career by earning an associate degree from a community college. Dr. Hetherington, who has over 35 years of progressively responsible community college leadership experience, assumed the presidency of Howard Community College on June 1, 2007.
In 2013, Dr. Hetherington was appointed by the Governor of Maryland to serve a two-year term on the Maryland Education Council (Education Commission of the States). As a senior member of the Maryland Council of Community College Presidents (MCCCP), Dr. Hetherington will chair the group in fiscal year 2014 and serve as vice president of the Maryland Association of Community Colleges (MACC) executive committee. In this role, she serves on the P-20 Leadership Council of Maryland, initiated by the Governor in 2007 and established by statute in 2010. Dr. Hetherington also serves on the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC) Commission on Communications and Marketing
Dr. Hetherington, who has been named twice as one of Maryland’s Top 100 Women by The Daily Record, was a recipient of the 2012 SmartCEO Brava Award, and the 2012 National Association for Community College Entrepreneurship Entrepreneurial President Award, leads an institution that is nationally recognized for its strong academic programs, innovative approach to instruction, and student support services. HCC enrolls over 30,000 credit and noncredit students annually.
Under Dr. Hetherington’s leadership, the college has received numerous accolades including the 2007 U.S. Senate Productivity Award for Organizational Performance Excellence; was a finalist for the nation’s highest recognition of excellence, the 2008 Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award; and was designated by The Chronicle of Higher Education as a “Great College to Work For” for the last five years.
Dr. Hetherington is respected in the community as a leader and visionary and is often invited to serve on boards, as honorary chair for community events, and to make presentations to community groups. She serves on the board of the Howard County Chamber of Commerce. Nationally, Dr. Hetherington serves on the Community Colleges for International Development (CCID), which promotes global learning through study abroad opportunities for all students.
Prior to her presidency, Dr. Hetherington served HCC for eight years as vice president of student services, then executive vice president and capital campaign manager, before being appointed president. Before arriving at HCC, she held various positions at the Community College of Philadelphia, including dean of student systems for ten years. She also served as an adjunct faculty member at Delaware County Community College.
Dr. Hetherington holds an Ed.D. from Widener University, a M.S. from Villanova University, a B.S.S. from Pennsylvania State University, and an A.A.S. from the Community College of Philadelphia. She currently serves on numerous boards at the local, regional, and national level.