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A Message from the President

President Kathleen Hetherington

As I write this message, we are finally seeing light at the end of this global pandemic, as the COVID-19 vaccination offers much-needed hope and becomes more readily available throughout Howard County and the state of Maryland. HCC nursing faculty and students are out front contributing to this important vaccination effort by serving as volunteers at the Howard County Health Department site on the HCC campus and at other locations. Learn more about how HCC is creating health care heroes and providing a valuable service to Howard County.

The pandemic also exacerbated the challenges some students face in trying to meet their needs for food and housing. Without access to or the funding for nutritional food or a stable place to live, students have difficulty focusing on their courses, much less their academic success. That is why HCC has been working to ensure all its students thrive. The article, “Meeting the Need,” looks at the efforts by faculty, staff, and donors to support students today and into the future. 

While we will never go back to the lives we had before, I remain optimistic about the “new reality” that is emerging. HCC has been critically examining teaching and services to determine what worked well over the past year and how best to move forward in unique and different ways. Higher education will be forever shaped by the pandemic, and the only way to succeed is to re-envision what college could and should be. Read on to learn about the bold strides faculty are making in unlocking this new future.

In looking ahead to the future, I have made my own decisions about what lies ahead. I have decided to retire as president of HCC on October 1, 2021. It has been a wonderful 14 years at the helm and a total of 22 years as a member of the college community. I am making this transition at the best possible time because the college has planned to safely return to campus in greater numbers by the fall. My decision also comes after such successes as the 50th anniversary, the Great Colleges to Work For honor for 12 consecutive years, and the 2019 Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award. All of these accolades would not have been possible without the dedication and commitment of the board of trustees, faculty, and staff. 

The ongoing support of donors, alumni, retirees, and friends have made my presidency a meaningful experience. I will cherish our time together and look forward to connecting with you over the next weeks and months.

Best regards,

Kathleen Hetherington's signature

Kathleen Hetherington, Ed.D.


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