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A Message from the President

HCC students join Dr. Kate Hetherington, president (center), at the 2019 Student Advocacy Day in Annapolis.

As Howard Community College (HCC) prepares for its annual commencement ceremony, graduating students are readying for transfer to four-year colleges and universities or to start a new career. No matter their destination, they have received real-world work experiences in some form or fashion, whether on campus, through community partners, or at local employers. Students value this connection between the classroom and the workplace, as it better prepares them for career success.

How does HCC know this early career exposure works? Take the clinical internships that are a hallmark of training in the nursing and allied health programs. For three consecutive years, 100 percent of graduates in the fields of nursing, radiologic technology, medical lab technology, and dental hygiene found employment. Another example: the college’s first-ever apprenticeship program in heating, ventilation, air conditioning, and refrigeration quickly filled its inaugural class with students who embraced the opportunity to “earn while they learn.” Every student who successfully completes the program will have employment. Read more about how the college is supporting students in our cover article starting on page 4.

Students love sharing their HCC work and classroom experiences with legislators every year at Student Advocacy Day, an annual event that I am proud to have started in Maryland. Through the Maryland Association of Community Colleges, HCC and the state’s 15 other community colleges organize groups of students for visits to their state legislators. For some students, it may be their first trip to Annapolis or their first time sitting down with state senators and delegates, and it is a valuable opportunity for students to prepare for what comes after HCC. A photo from this year’s Student Advocacy Day is featured below.

I also want to highlight two donors to the HCC Educational Foundation, Inc. who are featured in this issue, as they both epitomize how interconnected student work experiences are with the community. As president of Howard County General Hospital, Steven Snelgrove has encouraged a supportive workplace culture that inspires HCC students who participate in clinical internships and aspire to find employment there. Another donor, Sherifah Munis of the Newwave Foundation, recently celebrated a engaging new collaboration with HCC by hosting a Code-a-Thon with cybersecurity students. The top student won a summer internship with NewWave Technologies.

Throughout this issue of Pathways, you will find that HCC is a mission-driven institution committed to educating students for the workforce of the future. This focus on supporting students from their first day to completion and eventual employment is what sets HCC apart and continues to inspire Howard County families to make HCC a top choice for college.

Best regards,

Kathleen Hetherington's signature

Kathleen Hetherington, Ed.D.


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