Spring 2019
A walk across the stage into a promising future
SMCC President Joe Cassidy congratulates one of SMCC's 1,096 graduates this May.

Nearly 3,000 MCCS students graduated this month from one of Maine's seven community colleges, prepared to continue their education or enter the Maine workforce and contribute to the state's economy. Every one of them has a story to tell about perseverance and hard work. Here are just a few:
WCCC graduate Briggette Newell-Bowen has overcome many personal barriers and health issues, including addiction, to get where she is today. She graduated this spring with a degree in human services and is planning a future as a substance abuse counselor, helping her community on the Pleasant Point reservation and being an inspiration to others. 
CMCC graduate Tyler Hayes, named to the All-Maine Academic Team for academic achievement, leadership and service, graduated from the precision machining technology program. Soon after starting at CMCC, Tyler was hired at Knox Machine in Warren, where he is now a  trusted operator of one of the company's largest CNC machines, making electrical turbine parts for General Electric.

CMCC graduate Kayla Thayer overcame several challenges to become a college student, including dropping out of high school. Majoring in life sciences, Kayla took full advantage of what CMCC offered her. She was honored as the college's Student of the Year, was in the Honors Program, a leader in Phi Theta Kappa, a tutor, a volunteer with Safe Voices and worked while attending classes. She plans to continue her education at a Maine university and become a pharmacist.

EMCC graduate Jeremy Cole returned to college 13 years after completing a program in electrician's technology. With five teenagers at home and a desire to expand his career in order to provide greater financial stability for his family, he enrolled in EMCC's rigorous electrical and automation technology program. Graduating with an associate's degree and a 3.5 GPA, he plans to transfer this fall to the electrical engineering technology program at UMaine.
Briggette Newell-Bowen
Tyler Hayes  
Kayla Thayer 
Jeremy Cole 
Hands-on learning at 40 feet    
More than 570 students have completed KVCC's electrical lineworker technology program since its inception in 1990. Graduates earn an average starting salary of more than $60,000 a year.

The program provides a highly skilled and critically important workforce to Maine's utility industry, and utility companies have provided key support. This spring Central Maine Power and On Target Utility Services, headquartered in Gardiner, donated 27 utility poles for the one-year certificate program.

The poles, which are hard to get, are key to the program since students spend two-thirds of their time doing hands-on training, much of it 30 to 40 feet in the air. KVCC's graduates are "an invaluable source of skilled talent," according to On Target Vice President Rita Bilodeau.
A new NMCC nursing program addresses a growing need for caregivers   

Responding to a workforce gap in nursing in Aroostook and beyond, NMCC has launched a new program based out of Houlton Regional Hospital training Practical Nurses (PN's).
The program is the only one of its kind offered by a public institution in Maine.
"The program will play a crucial role to fill our nursing needs as they work in conjunction with our registered nurses to provide care to our residents," said Jim Brown, administrator at Madigan Health Services in Houlton.
Some of the students' education is sponsored by their current health care employer.
"Not only is it a great opportunity for employers, but for staff as well," said co-instructor Angela Davis RN BSN. "It's that mid-level step; it's not as large of a commitment as a two-year registered nursing degree. Some of our students are cutting back on work hours to participate in the program; this offers a nine-month program and will get them back into the workforce at a different level."
Students in the new practical nursing program will join the nearly 1,700 Maine community college students who are preparing to become nurses, surgical and respiratory techs, radiographers, medical assistants, EMTs, and other allied health professionals. When they graduate, the vast majority of these students will stay in Maine, providing skilled care in their communities and helping to address a serious shortage of health care workers across the state.

MCCS revs up short-term training programs

An inaugural class of 15 students launched a new seven-week training program to provide Maine boat yards with skilled workers who know how to fix and maintain outboard motors. After a string of boat yard owners agreed they needed help finding qualified marine technicians, they partnered with Yamaha Marine and SMCC to create a new Yamaha outboard motor repair training program that is free for qualified students.

The program is funded by a grant from the Maine Quality Centers (MQC), an MCCS program that has supported the workforce training needs of more than 261 businesses and 17,300 Mainers since its inception.

This year, the MQC program is on pace to provide short-term training to over 1,500 individuals in programs that range from SMCC's BIW welding program and Construction Institute to expanded commercial driver's license training programs . The MQC programs provide a rapid response to employers who have immediate needs for skilled workers, and they offer unemployed and underemployed Mainers a chance to upgrade their skills and compete for jobs that are in high demand.

Congratulations to the latest graduates of the SMCC Construction Institute, which provides training in core construction skills in demand in the construction industry.
News Briefs

Secretary of the Navy praises BIW workforce training
SMCC manufacturing technician and welding training programs that prepare students for jobs at Bath Iron Works got a special shout-out from Secretary of the Navy Richard Spencer. At an Armed Services Committee hearing in April, Spencer said he could see the impact of expanding training in the area. "I was very encouraged on my last visit up a month ago to see that both the community (college) and the high schools are adopting primary skill sets and advanced curriculum in this area," Spencer said.

A fond farewell to Barbara Finkelstein
Dr. Scott
Barbara Finkelstein
YCCC President Barbara Finkelstein will retire on June 30 after nearly five years at the college. "Barbara has made major contributions to York County Community College and to the region it serves, expanding facilities and programs and working in close partnership with area employers to build a more highly skilled workforce," said MCCS President David Daigler. "Those of us who have had the good fortune to work with her wish her all good things in her retirement." Central Maine Community College President Scott Knapp will serve as interim president, overseeing both colleges. Dr. Knapp has been president at CMCC since 1997 and has previously served as interim president at YCCC. A search for the next president of YCCC, which enrolls more than 1,600 students, will begin in the fall.

(l to r) Jean Ginn Marvin, Joyce Maker, Gov. Janet Mills, and Mike Michaud.      
And a welcome to the newest members of the MCCS Board of Trustees
Former U.S. Congressman Mike Michaud and former state Senator Joyce Maker have been appointed to the   MCCS Board of Trustees by Governor Janet Mills. The Governor has also reappointed Jean Ginn Marvin, Innkeeper of the Nonantum Resort in Kennebunk, who currently serves as Board chair.

The Lady Mustangs drive again to a national win!
The CMCC women's basketball team won the United States Collegiate Athletic Association Division II National Championship for the second time in three years, beating Villa Maria of Buffalo, NY, 85-78.

SMCC celebrates 50 years of fire training
For 50 years, Southern Maine Community College has been training firefighters, including the development of one of the largest live-in programs in the country.Today, almost 90 students are placed in 30 fire/EMS stations in 16 southern Maine communities. More than 450 students have served communities, responding to hundreds of emergency calls each year, teaching public education classes, installing smoke alarms, staffing open
houses - all while under the watchful eyes of experienced supervisors and mentors. Live-in graduates serve as career fire/EMS members in nearly every southern Maine and New Hampshire department as well as Boston, Providence, New York Philadelphia, Atlanta, Milwaukee, Denver and multiple towns and cities across the country and around the world.

MCCS continues to offer lowest tuition and fees in New England
As students finalize decisions about where to attend college in the fall, Maine's community colleges continue to offer the lowest tuition and fees in New England. What's more, nearly half of all students effectively attend a Maine community college for free, because of grants and scholarships that more than cover tuition and fees, which average $3,700 per year for a full-time student.  
Maine Community College System
207-629-4000 | info@mccs.me.edu | www.mccs.me.edu
323 State Street |Augusta, ME 04330

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