Feb. 13, 2012
In This Issue
Governor Patrick, Education Secretary, Visit MWCC
MWCC Opens New Leominster Student Success Center
AmeriCorps Job Ready Members Participate in MLK Day of Service
Upcoming Events
Join Our Mailing List!
Quick Links

TopGovernor Patrick, Education Secretary, Visit MWCC 

Governor Deval Patrick and Secretary of Education Paul Reville visited Mount Wachusett Community College on February 1. During the visit to the Gardner campus, they met with President Daniel M. Asquino and Board of Trustees Chairman Jim Garrison, then greeted students and others who gathered for the occasion.


The visit was the governor's first to the college following his January 23 State of the State address, in which he called for an additional $10 million in funding for the state's 15 community colleges in the upcoming fiscal year, as well as a proposed centralization plan. Several legislators and local business and community leaders also stopped by to express views on the proposal.


Governor Patrick greets students during a visit to MWCC
Governor Deval Patrick greeted students during his recent visit to the Gardner campus.

MWCC Opens New Leominster Student Success Center

LSSC Math Tutor Hector Melendez helps a student with homeworkMWCC's new Leominster Student Success Center recently hosted an open house to showcase the variety of expanded services available to students at the satellite campus, including transfer advising, academic advising, career and personal counseling, veterans' counseling and advising, library services, disabilities services and tutoring.

Leominster faculty and staff hosted the event on February 7 and 8 to celebrate the new center and to provide students with an overview of the services offered, including drop-in tutoring for math and English and tutoring by appointment for science, English as a Second Language and other subject areas. The open house included participation from the ESL club, as well as a raffle for a Nook, donated by the MWCC's Barnes & Noble bookstore.
 "The center opened last fall to the delight of students and has continued to gain in popularity and increased participation," said Dean John Walsh. "Having these services on campus is a convenient resource for students who attend both day and evening classes."

MWCC LaChance Library staff provide students with assistance in the areas of research, database searches and citing sources for their coursework. In addition, the Leominster campus is collaborating with the Leominster Public Library to provide further support for students in the region, Walsh said.

- Hannah Adams
Pictured: Math Tutor Hector Melendez assists student Cristina Pena Bautista in the new Leominster Student Success Center.

AmeriCorps Job Ready Members Participate in MLK Day of Service 

AmeriCorps MLK Day of Service Mount Wachusett Community College and Fitchburg State University are in the second year of a three year grant to host 15 full-time AmeriCorps Job Ready Program members. The program is designed to aid in fighting joblessness and raising job readiness and awareness in North Central Massachusetts. The program came to fruition thanks to a generous, three-year grant of $585,000, given to the institutions by the Corporation for National and Community Service.

Like many AmeriCorps members nationwide, the AmeriCorps Job Ready Members spent the Martin Luther King holiday in January performing a day of service. The site this year was Our Father's House, a transitional living facility located in Fitchburg. The members sorted clothing donations and worked in the food pantry. Jon Allen, an AmeriCorps member placed at MWCC, designed and painted a mural to highlight the mission of the house. Beth Robbins, an AmeriCorps member placed at Fitchburg State, designed and painted a quote by Dr. King: "Society's punishments are small compared to the wounds we inflict upon our soul when we look the other way."

Member leader Taryn Holly reflected on the day saying, "They have 19 beds for men and nine for women and they are all full. That just broke my heart to know there were so many people so close to home that need help. Even though our service did not directly affect their long-term housing needs, they were so grateful to have a group of young people there to dedicate a day of service. We were able to sit and talk with many of the residents and hear about their stories and unique situations firsthand, which made a strong impression on all of us."

Members began their terms of AmeriCorps service in August 2011 and will conclude service in July 2012. At the end of their year of service, each individual volunteer will have given more than 1,700 hours of service, and approximately 25,500 hours collectively.
This year's AmeriCorps members are: Jon Allen, Sara Ellison, Sam Garcia, Molly Murphy, Nathalie Torres, Carlinea Brown, Taryn Holly, Beth Robbins, Julian Stakley, Valerie Damon-LeDuc, Tyler Sweeney, Nicolette Santiago, Karen Dahl and Nicole Rallens.

- Shelley Errington-Nicholson
Pictured: Valerie Damon-LeDuc and Sam Garcia were among the AmeriCorps members who volunteered during the Martin Luther King Day of Service on January 16.
Upcoming Events

A Valentine's Day Chocolate Sampler will be available Tuesday, Feb. 14 between 12:30 and 1:30 p.m. in the South Cafe. Free samples of chocolate desserts will be available while supplies last. This event is sponsored by the Student Life office.


An American Red Cross Blood Drive will take place Tuesday, Feb. 14 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the Commons. To register, contact the Health Services office at ext. 136, or 978-630-9136. Walk-ins are welcome.


A talk on Alzheimer's Disease, "Know the 10 Signs: Early Detection Matters," will be presented on Wednesday, Feb. 15 from 1 to 2 p.m. in MWCC's Fitness & Wellness Center. The guest speaker is Julie McMurray, MA, LOMHC. The free program is sponsored by the center as part of a winter brown bag lunch series. Participants are invited to bring their own lunch to the presentation.


"Her Conviction," an exhibition of work by MWCC art instructor Susan Montgomery, is on display in the East Wing Gallery of the Raymond M. LaFontaine Fine Arts Center through Feb. 21. Montgomery will present an artist's talk on Wednesday, Feb. 15 at 12:30 p.m. in the gallery, answering questions and explaining, more in-depth, the theme and meaning behind her collection. The gallery is open for regular hours Monday through Thursday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. and on Fridays from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.


Performer Afro D (Pete Shunghu) playing the trumpetMWCC's celebration of Black History Month continues on Wednesday, Feb. 15 with a performance by spoken word artist, musician, and social activist Afro D (Pete Shunghu) at 12:30 p.m. in the South Cafe. The performer uses his art as a medium to promote reflection, understanding and community building. Along with performing his music and poetry all over the world, Shunghu has taught history in Boston public schools, English at an orphanage in Mexico, and served as an AmeriCorps*VISTA in Worcester, among many other transformative life opportunities. 


The Dental Hygiene program is hosting a presentation on Wednesday, Feb. 15 at 10:30 a.m. at the Burbank campus in Fitchburg. Dr. Aidee Nieto-Herman, founder of the Massachusetts Hispanic Dental Association professional chapter and founder of the Hispanic International Mission, will present the talk,"Multicultural Crisis in Oral Health in America, the Role and Need of More Mentors and Leaders in the Dental Field." Dr. Aidee Nieto-Herman specializes in periodontology, oral diagnosis and implantology and has a private practice in Boston. A native of Venezuela, she is a former president of the National Hispanic Dental Association (HDA) and is currently an associate clinical professor at Tufts University School of Dental Medicine.

Mardi Gras CarnivalThe annual Mardi Gras Carnival, sponsored by the office of Student Life and student clubs and organizations, will take place Thursday, Feb. 16 from 6 to 10 p.m. in the South Café at the Gardner campus. This is a free event for MWCC students, faculty, staff, and a guest to enjoy karaoke from 6 to 8 p.m. and dancing from 8 to 10 p.m. Every hour, a door prize of $100 will be given away and, although costumes are optional, cash prizes of $100, $70, and $30 will be awarded to the top three costumes of the night. Free snacks and drinks also will be provided. 


MWCC's Financial Aid office is offering FAFSA Filing Workshops to provide one-on-one assistance to students to complete the 2012-2013 Free Application for Federal Student Aid. Workshops will take place every Friday from 10 a.m. to noon beginning Feb. 17 through May 11 in the Advising Center. In addition, workshops will take place on Tuesdays from 4 to 6 p.m. on April 17, April 24, May 1 and May 8. Contact the Financial Aid office at 978-630-9169 to sign up or for more information.


Zumba Fitness LogoWhether you are a Zumba enthusiast or would like to try this fun dance fitness class, there's an opportunity to do so while raising money for the American Cancer Society. The Fitness and Wellness Center at Mount Wachusett Community College is hosting a Zumba for Hope fundraising event on Saturday, Feb. 18 from 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. The event is open to the public for a suggested donation of $10 to be collected at the door. The fitness center and many local businesses have donated raffle prizes and refreshments for participants, including a post-event pizza party. All proceeds raised will benefit the American Cancer Society and raise funds for the fourth annual Spin for Hope event in March. Zumba instructors Tara Palmieri, Olivia Cushing and Sara Lafluer will lead this dance exercise. Participants may take part in one hour, two hours, or the entire three hours. No experience is needed. For more information call 978-630-9212. 


The MWCC Math Department and Math Club is hosting a presentation on Math Anxiety on Wednesday, Feb. 22 from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. in room 358. Guest speaker Gail Kilyard, a doctoral student at UMass Amherst, will lead a discussion on "Math Anxiety and the Connections between Trust and Learning Mathematics." She will share her results of a pilot study done at Holyoke Community College, which focused on students' math anxiety, what students thought were the connections between trust and learning, and what motivated them to learn mathematics. She is also interested in hearing how MWCC's faculty and students deal with these issues of trust, math anxiety, and motivation.


Logo of Fiddler on the Roof featuring Tevye, the main character

Theatre at the Mount opens its 2012 season with the musical, Fiddler on the Roof, with performances on February 24, 25, March 2 and 3 at 8 p.m., and Feb. 26 and March 4 at 2 p.m. the production won nine Tony Awards including Best Musical and was one of the first Broadway musicals to deal with serious issues such as persecution, poverty and holding on to one's beliefs. The award winning score features such well-known songs as Sunrise, Sunset, Matchmaker, and If I Were a Rich Man. For tickets and reservations, call the Theatre at the Mount box office at 978-632-2403 or purchase tickets online at  


The spring 2012 Student Life Film Series continues with Louder Than A Bomb on Tuesday, Feb. 28 at 12:30 p.m. in the North Café. The film is about passion, competition, teamwork, and trust. Every year, more than 600 teenagers from 60 Chicago area schools gather for the world's largest youth poetry slam. It's about the joy of being young, the pain of growing up, speaking out, making noise, and finding your voice. Upcoming films include Miss Representation on March 22; Bullied on April 3, and The Way We Get By on April 12. 


MWCC is offering Information Sessions on a number of academic programs. Upcoming sessions will take place on the following dates: A.S. Nursing: Feb. 14, 2 to 3 p.m., Gardner Campus, room 204 and Feb. 16, 5 to 6 p.m., at the Devens Campus; Dental Hygiene: Feb. 15, 2 to 3 p.m., Fitchburg Campus (Burbank), Library; Complementary Health Care/Physical Therapist Assistant: Feb. 16, 2 to 3 p.m. Gardner Campus, room 205; Clinical Lab Science: Feb. 21, 4 to 5 p.m., Gardner Campus, room 214; GM Automotive Technology: Feb. 22, 5:30 to 6:30 p.m., Devens Campus, Conference Room; Practical Nursing: Feb. 28, 2 to 3 p.m., Gardner Campus, room 204. In addition, small group information sessions are offered daily Monday through Thursday beginning at 3 p.m. Prospective students interested in attending an information session are asked to call the Admissions Office at 978-630-9110 (TTY 978-632-4916), or send an email to  


Go to top

To submit to the MWCC e-News or request coverage for your event, contact the Public Relations Office at 978-630-9547. Archived issues of Mount Wachusett Community College e-News can be found online at
Janice O'Connor
Director of Public Relations
Mount Wachusett Community College