Dolores and Robert Taylor
For Dolores and Robert Taylor, Columbia residents since 1977, Howard Community College is a family affair. Dolores earned her associate’s degree from HCC, two of their sons attended the college, and they are hoping their granddaughter will choose to go in the spring. “I see HCC as probably one of the pillars in Howard County. Howard County has been named one of the top counties in the nation and I think HCC plays a part in that,” says Robert Taylor.
The Taylor’s son Jeffrey was attending the college when he passed away as a result of a medical condition. The college returned his tuition and Dolores Taylor said, “It was touching to us. We took that money and established the Jeffrey M. Taylor Memorial Fund. By doing that, we felt it was a way to keep his memory alive.” Her husband adds, “When Jeffrey passed away, there was a lot of love from HCC. They gave to us. This was a way to give back to the college.” The Taylors praised the support from staff and faculty, especially in helping Jeffrey making the transition from high school to college with his individualized educational plan due to his medical condition.
The Taylors stressed the college’s role in preparing students to transfer to a four-year college or get job training. Mrs. Taylor says, “It gives students time to prepare themselves before making decisions on what they want to do, a good starting block.” “The college’s slogan, ‘You can get there from here’ says it all. We heard a Disney executive talk about his journey that started at HCC and I thought, ‘Here is someone very successful who came from this college’,” says Mr. Taylor, who owns his own business.
They both marvel at the growth of the campus and its programs saying “We’ve seen it grow from one building to what it is now. Tremendous growth, tremendous asset for the county. The expanded linkages with the University of Maryland systems are especially helpful.”
Mr. Taylor adds, “The role of the community college is to provide an opportunity for everyone to attend college. It provides quality education at a substantially reduced cost and students can attend when it’s most convenient for them.”