MCCS: Your Workforce Partner
Fall 2011

Private sector donates millions to Maine's Community Colleges
Governor Paul LePage and former Governor John R. McKernan, Jr., were joined by business leaders from across the state on November 14 to announce $11.3 million in private support for the state's community colleges. The gifts made to The Foundation for Maine's Community Colleges' first-ever fundraising campaign, will help support efforts by the colleges to expand enrollment from 18,500 to 25,000 students by 2018. The funds will be used to expand occupational programs, upgrade facilities, update instructional equipment and technology, and provide financial assistance to students.

"Maine businesses, local and national philanthropies, and private individuals recognize that an investment in our community colleges and in the hard working people of this state is an investment in a more prosperous Maine."
-- Governor McKernan and Lisa Gorman, co-chairs of the Campaign for Maine's Community Colleges
Rich Petersen joins Foundation boardMaine Medical Center's Rich Petersen
Rich Petersen, the President and CEO of Maine Medical Center, has recently joined the Board of The Foundation for Maine's Community Colleges. His interest in the colleges is both personal and professional.

He is quick to say that Maine's community colleges are an important asset to healthcare in Maine, providing a talented pool of nurses and allied health professionals.

As a graduate of Broome Community College in Binghamton, New York, Rich also knows from personal history the importance of a community college education.

"Community college provided a wonderful pathway for not only earning my Bachelor's degree in Health Care Administration, but ultimately an MBA. Economically, it was incredibly beneficial, and I was able to develop competencies that remain with me today. I approached community college from the very beginning as a leg in a longer journey of higher education."

Rich is not alone in that journey. Each year over 700 students graduate from one of the nearly 50 healthcare programs offered by Maine's community colleges. And each year Rich is proud to welcome graduates like Jonathan Czachor (right) to the Maine Medical Center staff. A cardiovascular technology major at Southern Maine Community College, Jonathan is now manager of the cardiac catheterization lab at the hospital.
Did you know?
More than 9,500 students are enrolled in occupational and trade programs at Maine's community colleges this fall, a 56 percent increase since 2002. Among the most popular areas of study: health care, traditional trades (plumbing, heating, welding, etc.), business, and computing. In addition, the colleges' liberal studies programs have provided many students with a place to start their degree and, once they determine their area of interest, enter an occupational program. Over the past decade, the colleges have added 75 new program options in areas that include alternative energy, precision manufacturing, and composites technology.
WCCC's dedicates Center for Construction ExcellenceWCCC Building Center
An old house in need of repair has become an important teaching tool for students enrolled in WCCC's construction trade program.The house, now the college's Center for Construction Excellence, is providing students with hands-on experience in a variety of skill areas. Last year, building construction students learned their trade by gutting and studding parts of the house to meet code. Other students enrolled in the college's residential and commercial electricity program rewired the upstairs, while heating and plumbing students worked on the boiler system. The Center, together with the college's new pressurized house for weatherization training, will also enable the college to run workshops and seminars for local building professionals to help them update their skills.

"These new resources provide our students and local businesses with valuable hands-on training in real-world situations."
-- WCCC instructor Bill Barnett.
NMCC recognized for efforts to build alternative energy workforce
NMCC's rural partnership to build a green economy has received national recognition from the Sustainability Education and Economic Development (SEED) Center in Washington, DC. The Center featured the college's initiatives in its newsletter and website, saying:

"Confronted with decreased employment opportunities, the loss of family farms, and the closure of the region's largest employer, Loring Air Force Base, higher education and business partners in a rural region in Maine understand that active collaboration is the only way to survive. With Northern Maine Community College (NMCC) at the center, their partnership is building an economy anchored in alternative energy with a workforce prepared for technological shifts. And, the College is set to build a world-class workforce with pivotal green industry skills."
Maine Quality Centers logoThe Maine Quality Centers (MCQ) program provides no-cost workforce training to qualified Maine businesses seeking to expand. If you are interested in learning more about how MQC and your local community college can help your firm grow, contact Jim McGowan at 767-5210, x4107. Tell us what Maine's Community Colleges can do for you
For Greg Williams a degree brings a raise, a promotion, and job satisfactionGreg Williams
Greg Williams graduated from Edward Little High School in 1997. One week later he started driving a fork lift at the Poland Spring bottling facility. Before long, and with the encouragement of his supervisors at the plant, he realized he needed a college credential in order to advance. Assisted by the company's tuition reimbursement program, Greg enrolled in the electromechanical technology program at CMCC. He took two or three courses each semester, while continuing to work full time, and in 2004 he graduated with his associate degree. With the degree, he earned a promotion and an $8 an hour raise. Today, he helps maintain the plant's highly technical equipment. What did he like best about the opportunity to return to school? The relevance of his CMCC courses: "I like the fact that I'm actually getting to do the work that CMCC prepared me to do."

WCCC has added an international commerce option to its business administration degree program. Bill Case, senior business faculty member, says the new degree option will help students prepare for careers in the global economy and for transfer to four-year programs. Case sees the Calais-based college's location as an asset to the program. "Our proximity to the border and its activity gives us a natural reality lab that provides numerous opportunities for faculty, staff, students and businesses to exercise teaching moments," he said. "Currency exchange, tariffs, transportation, cultural, political, social and legal issues are demonstrated continuously and are easily facilitated as educational opportunities that are not easily replicated." For more info contact  Susan Mingo.

Students enrolled in EMCC's building construction program are constructing an energy lab that will be used to teach energy sciences. The lab will include components of four heating, three roofing, and three foundation systems, as well as several types of insulation. According to Les Stackpole, department chair of EMCC's Building Construction program, it will allow students to experience first-hand how various components of a building's structure affect energy efficiency.

KVCC has installed an 80-foot, 5-killowatt wind turbine on its Fairfield campus. The turbine will provide electrical power to one of the college's buildings and serve as a teaching tool for students in the electrical technology program who study small wind power systems design and installation. The funding to install the turbine was provided by Efficiency Maine with support from the Maine Public Utilities Commission's Community Development Projects Fund. Partners in the KVCC Wind Power Turbine Demonstration Project include Green Earth Energy, Sustain Mid-Maine, Skowhegan Career & Technical Education Center, Mid-Maine Technical Education Center, and Unity College.

More than 230 young women from Maine middle and high schools learned about careers in traditionally male-dominated fields at the Totally Trades Conferences held recently at NMCC and WCCC. The goal of the events was to introduce girls in grades 8 through 12 to jobs that in the past have been dominated by men, such as carpentry, engineering, bridge construction, drafting, plumbing and heating, and automotive technology.

YCCC and its Center for Entrepreneurship honored local businesses at its annual Entrepreneur Awards Celebration. Among those recognized: Rookie of the Year Seed and Bean Coffee House of West Kennebunk; Small Business of the Year Cape Porpoise Lobster Company of Kennebunkport; Employer of the Year Hussey Seating Company of Berwick; and Entrepreneur of the Year Maine Manufacturing in Sanford.

NMCC has become a Computer Technology Industry Association (CompTIA) Authorized Academy Program member, which will allow it to offer additional training and lower related testing costs for those seeking certain hardware and software certifications. For more information, contact Joe McLaughlin, NMCC computer electronics instructor.

Three local business leaders have been elected to the York County Community College Foundation Board of Directors: Wanda Ring, Cummings Lamont & McNamee; Chuck Bates, General Dynamics; and James Fitzgerald, Kennebunk-Kennebunkport Chamber of Commerce.
For more information about the training and workforce development programs offered by Maine's community colleges.

College business and industry contacts 

Maine Quality Centers 

MCCS business and industry resources 

Center for Career Development 



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